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Germany

Poll: Germans Want Their Own Obama

Three-quarters of Germans would welcome "a German Obama," telling pollsters a politician with the US president's charisma would do Germany good, a German newsmagazine said Wednesday, Jan. 28.

obama balloons at Brandenburg Gate

Germany could use a politician like Obama, a majority of Germans think

The survey, by the Forsa polling company, found 76 percent were impressed by the US president, while 14 percent said they would prefer not to have someone like Obama on the ballot and 10 percent did not know.

The only major foreign speech of Obama's campaign for the presidency was in Germany last June, with hundreds of thousands of people crowded Berlin's Tiergarten park to get a close-up look at the candidate.

A former chancellor, Gerhard Schroeder, said in an interview with another magazine, Cicero, that the first black US president should prompt cabinet-level representation for Germany's biggest ethnic minority, Turks.

In the wake of Obama's election, some have have asked whether the same thing could happen in London, Paris or Berlin.

But that is not likely, at least any time soon. While minorities are present in European politics, there are high hurdles that make it unlikely there will be an British prime minister of Indian descent or a Senegalese-French president in the near future.

Germany is no different although the country has maked an important milestone. In November, Cem Ozdemir is now the first person of Turkish descent to head a major German political party after being elected as co-leader of the environmentalist Greens.

He, however, has few illusions about seeing a Turkish-German chancellor or even becoming an Obama-like figure in Germany.

In an interview with the Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper, he said, “Germany is still a developing country as far as having an open society goes.”

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