After 16 years in Germany, the Angela Merkel era came to an end. The new chancellor is Olaf Shaltz, leader of the Social Democratic Party. In the Bundestag, the parliament building in Berlin, 707 out of 636 MPs voted. Olaf got 395 votes. He needed 369 votes to become the ninth chancellor.
The election of the Chancellor was completed in the Parliament session on Wednesday morning after the welcome speech of the new Speaker Barbel Bus. After the one-and-a-half-hour session, newly elected Chancellor Olaf Schultz met with German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier at Bellevue Palace. There he received the president’s consent for his election as chancellor and for the appointment of 18 ministers in the new government. The ministers were then sworn in at a parliamentary session in the afternoon.
In Germany, the practice of forming an alliance government is a long-standing one. But this is the first time that the Social Democratic Party, the Environmental Green Party and the Liberal Democratic Party have formed an alliance. Political parties in the country have different colored symbols. The symbols of these three allied parties are red, green and yellow. That is why it is called Traffic Light Alliance.
At a press conference in Berlin, the leaders of the new coalition government signed the outline of the new government. After the 20th German election on September 24, the parties held discussions among themselves for a long 10 weeks. The three parties later agreed to form a coalition government for the next four years. Earlier, the three parties in the new coalition government held a party conference and sought the consent of the party members.
For the next four years, about 300 politicians and experts from the three parties have come up with a 16-page outline of the future. The new government was formed today after the leaders of the parties signed the document.
The outline of the newly formed coalition government emphasizes civic amenities. Such as: minimum wage, increase in pension, establishment of more rights for children and youth, repeal of discriminatory laws on abortion against women, simplification of citizenship law for immigrants. New pay scales have been proposed for employees in hospitals, nursing homes and kindergartens.
The outline calls for simplification of rules to encourage the public to invest in the capital market. Germany is currently facing a severe housing crisis, with plans to build 4 million homes a year and government subsidies and funding for housing. According to the new decision on climate protection, the polluting plan will be scrapped. Besides, environment and climate friendly projects will be taken up.
The three parties in the new coalition government have shared responsibilities in 16 ministries. The Social Democratic Party has seven ministries, the Environmental Green Party five and the Liberal Democratic Party four.
Olaf Schultz, leader of the Social Democratic Party, was finance minister in a coalition government led by Angela Merkel. Olaf Niedersachsen, 63, was born in 1956 in the city of Osanabrook. However, most of the time is spent in the port city of Hamburg. Olaf graduated from the University of Hamburg with a degree in law.
Olaf was once the mayor of Hamburg. Former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder was the General Secretary of the Social Democratic Party in 2002. Earlier, Merkel served as Labor and Social Welfare Minister. He has been the finance minister and assistant chancellor of the coalition government since 2016.
After World War II, Olaf became the fourth person from the Social Democratic Party to become Chancellor of Germany. Earlier, Willie Brand, Helmut Schmidt and Schroeder became chancellors of the party.