Portrait of Manuela Schwartz – reliably angering Merkel

The prime minister of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania is developing into a chancellor’s opponent in the second wave of epidemics. The pleasure of their party, SPD.

Brave mother from the Baltic Sea: Manuela Schwartz, Prime Minister of West Mecklenburg-Pomerania, speaks in Schwerin State Parliament.

Brave mother from the Baltic Sea: Manuela Schwartz, Prime Minister of West Mecklenburg-Pomerania, speaks in Schwerin State Parliament.

Photo: Jens Buettner (DPA / Keystone)

“I will not be accused of torturing children!” By analogy with Angela Merkel’s usual cool, the outbreak had nearly leaked from one of the recent rounds of negotiations between the chancellor and the federal states. Merkel is troubled by the accusation that she is confining children and mothers at home while working life continues as before.

The rebuke came from Manuela Schwartz, the Social Democrats who ruled Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. No one in the government camp is currently criticizing the chancellor more resolutely and assertively than the prime minister of the Baltic Sea. Every day, the 46-year-old complains on TV about how “totally disappointed” she is, and how “shaken” she is when she hears that the elderly are struggling so badly to get a vaccination appointment and that schoolchildren are feeling lonely at home.

Schwizig says that too little, too slowly, and incorrectly, a vaccine was ordered in Brussels as in Berlin.

Schwesig’s vaccination policy, in particular, is not a good thing: very little has been requested, too slowly and incorrectly, in Brussels as in Berlin. At one point, Merkel blew her collar off here, too, in front of a crowd of assembled prime ministers: “If I decipher the mistakes that have been made here on this round …”

For weeks, Schwartz has been defending himself against the impression that countries are only slowing down in the fight against the pandemic, and thus are responsible for the second wave that engulfed. Your criticism is well-founded in that anywhere in Germany the infection and death rates are no lower than in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. This, of course, is not only thanks to them: Schleswig-Holstein, which is also sparsely populated and located high in the sea in the north, was not similarly affected.

She has her own mind

Time and time again, Schweizig acted bravely when the others were waiting. When the lockdown was lifted last spring, reversing the trend, it first closed national borders to tourists, including Germans. In summer, the Baltic coast was the safest place in Germany and it hosted more vacationers than ever before.

It also follows a special path with schools: it uses the exceptions allowed by decisions between the federal and state governments so generously that tens of thousands of children and youth in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania are still enjoying face-to-face lessons – despite schools generally being closed. Schwartz, as their supporters cheer, has a mind of its own.

In any case, the Social Democratic rebellion satisfies her party. Ago German displeasure With the seemingly endless lockdown intensifying and the slow onset of vaccination, the PSD blames the Union for everything that goes wrong. Frustrated with CDU and CSU’s high and long-term lows, she seeks confrontation in her upcoming campaign. The grassroots leadership team around Merkel, Health Minister Jens Spahn and CSU President Marcus Söder is an ideal goal. Comrades said that the voters wanted to see that the people would fight for them. Schwesig explains how this is done.

Roll Back Breast Cancer

The woman was a fighter before. She has survived breast cancer for the past year and a half. She immediately announced the diagnosis, and resigned as acting party president, but kept her offices in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. Mondays to Thursdays she was running almost normally, Friday for treatment, and on weekends she was resting.

When the epidemic started a year ago, she was just starting her final third of treatment. In May, she appeared in the media with short hair instead of a wig, and announced she was cured. “It was the hardest battle of my life so far.” She looked liberated – and more assertive than ever.

Since then she has been fighting the epidemic for her country and people. Schwartz is popular at home, and is followed by hundreds of thousands of people on social media. Mother of two has a public music roster on Spotify, and on weekends she shows herself in a winter jacket and knitted hat by the sea or in the woods, always shining.

In order to secure the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, which is important to her country, she is not shy of tricks: with Russian money, she created an institution that has nothing to do with the environment as much as it has to do with undermining US sanctions. She simply smiles away from criticism, for example from the Green Party.

Just a few years ago, competitors mocked Schwartz, calling her a “coastal Barbie”, a “Steinmeier girl” or a “foster woman”. Today they are taken very seriously. If the tax and finance expert wins state elections in the fall, she must also become a force factor in the Social Democrats.

The worse the Social Democrats perform in the federal elections, the earlier the prime minister will be needed in the federal government. As party leader, for example, instead of Saskia Colorless Residence and Norbert Walter Burgans.

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