Germany’s new gay power broker

By Daily Maverick Legacy 30 September 2009

The politician that’s got tongues wagging in Germany is not re-elected chancellor Angela Merkel, but the Free Democrats’ “kingmaker” Guido Westerwelle. Westerwelle will help cement Merkel’s hold on power and earn himself the role of vice-chancellor (and probably foreign minister) as reward for steering his free-market, pro-business party to its best result yet in a federal election. The 47-year-old has spent the past several years working hard to transform his image from the fun-loving clown prince of politics, who once appeared on the German version of the reality show “Big Brother”, to that of a serious policy maker. And he’s the first openly gay leader of a major political party in Germany.

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