Chancellor Angela Merkel definitely added a new page in the history of Germany as she held the first one-hour long question and answer session with the members of the Bundestag on the 6th of June. Obviously inspired by Theresa May’s Weekly Question Time in the House of Commons, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s first Kanzler Fragestunde succeeded in making a positive impression upon all the other members of Parliament.
The coalition government of Germany had prepared several questions whose answers were all limited to one-minute sentences. Wolfgang Schäuble, the speaker of the Bundestag, was present at the historic building where he played his role of maintaining a colour coded timer which allowed the entire session to pass by without any interruptions. Chancellor Merkel never donned her station near the central lectern, but instead stood in attention for a full 60 minutes and delivered appropriate and precise answers which were appreciated by her fellow MPs and the journalists spectating the assembly from the visitor’s gallery above.
The Question Time had begun with tame questions regarding Chancellor Merkel’s opinions upon the upcoming G7 Summit which was scheduled to be held in Quebec soon. Follow-up questions included suggestions from the AfD regarding Russia being given a chance to re-join the G7 fold, and Germany probably controlling their refugee policies. All of these opinions were dismissed by the Chancellor, who stood firm in sticking to her policies of Germany being the ideal country for all refugees and immigrants.
By the end of the hour-long session, Chancellor Merkel had provided answers to all questions – starting from the control of diesel emissions and child poverty, to the future of women in the Parliament. After Wolfgang Schäuber had finally called the time, Chancellor Angela Merkel took her leave from the Reichstag building with promises of her return within four months’ time. As of June, 2018, the Kanzler Fragestunde is scheduled to be held three times per year, giving the Chancellor enough time to interact directly with her fellow members of the Bundestag.