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What Angela Merkel's exit means for Germany — and Europe

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Published on Jan 25, 2019

The European Union is about to lose one of its last anti-populist voices.

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel has been called the most powerful woman in the world, the liberal West's last defender, and the de facto leader of Europe. But 19 years after entering politics, she has announced she won't be running for a fifth term as chancellor and will be stepping away from politics. Her announcement comes at a pivotal time when nationalism is on the rise in Europe and the continent is still reeling from the 2015 migrant crisis. So what does Merkel stepping down mean for the future of Germany — and for the European Union?

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