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Monday, November 7, 2016

How Germany Views the U.S. Elections

The time has finally come. The U.S. presidential elections are tomorrow, and we will soon know who the future President of the United States will be. And if you are an American, you better go vote (I already did)!

Over the past few months, it has been just about impossible to turn on the TV here in Germany without seeing coverage of the U.S. presidential election. I can only imagine what it's like to actually be in the U.S. right now... *shudders*

But if you know anything about Germany, then it should already be pretty obvious that Clinton is favored among Germans. In fact, infratest dimap held a poll last month, which found that 86% of Germans said they would vote for Clinton and only 4% would vote for Trump.


The surprising part of this poll comes from AfD supporters. AfD (Alternative für Deutschland) is a right-wing populist political party whose rhetoric on refugees and immigrants very much mirrors Trump's statements about Mexicans and Muslims. However, it looks like even Trump is too extreme for them, as AfD voters were made up 14% of the poll's respondents. This means that the majority of AfD supporters would support Clinton over Trump.

Over these past few months, however, Germany's political leaders have been relatively quiet on this topic. Trump did claim that Chancellor Merkel "ruined Germany," but Merkel refused to retaliate. However, Germany's foreign minister did call Trump a "hate preacher."¹

If you follow Welcome to Germerica on Facebook, then you know that Germany's comedians have been more vocal about their views on the U.S. elections. Jan Böhmermann, the comedian who became quite famous after criticizing Turkish president Erdogan, covered the U.S. election in the Neo Magazin Royale episode from November 3, 2016. 

If you have the time, I highly suggest watching the entire episode. But if you don't have the time, you will get a gist of his message from the closing song that he created for the episode: 



Ultimately, whether you agree with the majority of Germans' opinion on who would make the best presidential candidate or not, I think we can all agree with the portrayal of both candidates on the current cover of Der Spiegel.

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