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Merkel’s Unseen Power Beate Baumann Misses No Chancellor Details

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is counting on one of her most reclusive and longest-serving aides to help her win re-election in September.

In two decades at Merkel’s side as the former East German scientist rose to the top, Beate Baumann, 49, has amassed influence that belies her title of the chancellor’s office manager, acting as policy adviser, speech-writer, coalition negotiator and gatekeeper, according to four people who have worked with her. That makes Baumann, a teacher of English and German by training who shuns public appearances and interviews, the most influential aide at the Chancellery in Berlin as Merkel seeks a third term in Sept. 22 elections.