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Olaf Scholz Voted in to Replace Merkel as Germany’s Leader


Designated German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (L) is offered flowers by Parliamentary group co-leader "Die Linke" after being elected as Germany's new Chancellor in Berlin on Dec. 8, 2021.

Germany’s parliament has elected Olaf Scholz as the country’s ninth post-World War II chancellor, opening a new era for the European Union’s most populous nation after Angela Merkel’s 16-year tenure.

Scholz’s government takes office with high hopes of modernizing Germany and combating climate change, but faces the immediate challenge of handling the country’s toughest phase yet of the coronavirus pandemic.

Scholz won the support of 395 lawmakers on Wednesday. His three-party coalition holds 416 seats in the 736-seat lower house of parliament.

Scholz was to be formally named as chancellor by Germany’s president and sworn in by the speaker of parliament later Wednesday.

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