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So Germany gets a government—one sorely lacking in ambition

The coalition agreement consists mostly of bland aspirations to virtue

By Paul Lever  

German chancellor Angela Merkel. Photo: Wolfgang Kumm/DPA/PA Images

Nearly six months after the federal election last September it looks as though Germany will finally get a government. A ballot of the membership of the Social Democrat Party (SPD) resulted in a decisive, albeit unenthusiastic, majority in favour of another Grand Coalition.

It is a second choice government. The Social Democrats originally refused to go into a coalition again as a junior partner. But when talks between Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU), the Free Democrats and the Greens broke down…

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