The Bundestag elections 2021 stand out in a number of respects. For the first time (with the exception of the first Bundestag election in 1949) there was no Chancellor seeking re-election. Furthermore, three parties were fielding a candidate for Chancellor. On top of that, the election took place during a pandemic, which, on one hand, had direct effects on the conduct of the campaign, and on the other, brought into focus people’s crisis management capabilities.
These special features, coupled with Angela Merkel bowing out after 16 years in the Chancellor’s office, the global challenges of climate change and the resulting need for a social and ecological transformation of the economic system made the 2021 Bundestag election into something of a choice of direction.
Who will be entrusted with the leadership of the government in these uncertain times? Who will lead Germany out of the Covid-19 pandemic and take the necessary steps to ensure prosperity and social cohesion in the country going forward?