Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer on Friday was elected the new leader of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party, the Christian Democratic Union. Merkel has been in the post for 18 years. She plans to finish her current term as chancellor, which ends in 2021.
Kramp-Karrenbauer narrowly beat millionaire lawyer Friedrich Merz for the post, BBC reported. The 56-year-old devout Catholic was seen as the party’s and chancellor’s pick for the position, with Merkel praising her electoral success in 2017 during her farewell speech.
The new CDU leader is seen by many as being a “mini-Merkel”, though she dislikes the name, according to reports. “I have read a lot about what I am and who I am: ‘mini’, a copy, simply ‘more of the same’,” she said. “Dear delegates, I stand before you as I am and as life made me and I am proud of that.” Kramp-Karrenbauer’s style and politics resembles Merkel’s, and she used her acceptance speech to assert that the party remain on the chancellor’s centrist path, BBC reported.
The party position gives Kramp-Karrenbauer the advantage to become the next chancellor.