German elections

The Change Candidate Who Needs to Change

Merkel-Schulz-AP
Hands off my voters, Merkel. Source: AP

Martin Schulz is Germany’s candidate for change in September’s election. Angela Merkel’s main rival is promising to digitize the economy, prioritize investment and close the increasingly wide gap between rich and poor.

The good news for the Social Democrat challenger is that a study of different social, political and demographic groups commissioned by Handelsblatt shows that Germans are eager for change. The bad news is they don’t want Mr. Schulz.

So could Germans be about to maintain the status quo?

Here’s a snapshot of Germany this summer: The economy is not exactly booming but growing steadily. Government debt has fallen for the third year in a row. The labor market is moving slowly but surely toward full employment. German businesses are having a field day and are supplying global markets with more goods than ever.

Overall, Europe’s largest economy is doing well, especially considering that only a few years before Ms. Merkel took office in 2005, the country was regarded as the “sick man” of Europe.

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