Biden’s Got a Berlin Problem Brewing

Armin Laschet, new leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), speaks during a news conference at CDU headquarters in Berlin, Germany, January 22, 2021. (Odd Andersen/Pool via Reuters)
The rise of a German politician with a record of Putin pandering is bad news for the new administration.

NRPLUS MEMBER ARTICLE T hose who expect President Joe Biden to singlehandedly fix the transatlantic relationship are in for a disappointment. Although the new administration in Washington takes a far more sympathetic view of Europe than its predecessor did, it is not clear that the sentiment will be reciprocated — especially in Berlin.

Following nearly two decades of Angela Merkel’s leadership, Armin Laschet, premier of Germany’s most populous state, Nordrhein-Westfalen, was elected on January 16 as the new leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU). Barring large swings in polls before the parliamentary election in September, Laschet is on track to become Germany’s next chancellor.

That

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