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Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Obama's Defeat: View From Berlin

The eight PM Tagesschau (Show of the Day) on Channel 1 is the major source of news for Germans. On Wednesday November 3, the Tagesschau devoted about one third of its coverage to the U.S. elections. The grave announcer and the similarly somber Washington correspondent related that President Obama suffered a major loss. Pictures of Tea Party protesters dressed in historical garb were flashed across the screen to introduce German viewers to the “extremists” who were threatening to take over the Republican Party from its “reasonable” (vernuenftige) wing. There was a brief mention that the new Republican “radicals” wanted a smaller state, but the new constellation of Congress will result in “trench warfare,” “ideological battle,” and an attempt to repeal Obama’s major achievement – health care reform. The general tone was one of disbelief that the American voters could turn into such a mob of radicals.

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