Progress On A Merkel Government

Despite political chaos in Berlin, the betting among pundits is that Christian Democrat Angela Merkel will still cobble together a coalition German government with herself as Chancellor. The unexpected resignation on Oct. 31 of Franz Müntefering, chairman of the center-left Social Democrats (SPD), raised questions about the SPD's reliability as a partner. But the two parties are making progress on issues such as giving states more policy-setting power. Merkel's influence may even have risen after Edmund Stoiber, a fellow conservative but a rival, decided to remain Bavarian Prime Minister rather than become Economics Minister in Berlin. Still, she'll have her hands full keeping a grand coalition together.

Edited by Rose Brady

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