To the question of who will succeed the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, who will say goodbye to power after the elections this Sunday, we can add that of who will be the partner of the future head of government, after the 16 years of the discreet professor Joachim Sauer, a jealous guardian of the private.
Sauer, five years older than Merkel and an authority on his own, Quantum Physics, managed to preserve himself from media interest, in part, thanks to the fact that he does not share his last name with her.
The political leader adopted in 1977 the surname of her first husband, a fellow student named Ulrich Merkel, whom she divorced five years later.
This factor helped both Sauer and Merkel’s brothers – Markus and Irene Kasner, the paternal last name – not to be automatically identifiable as “relatives” of the head of government and to be able to lead their own lives normally and away from the gaze of the media.
Sauer y Merkel they got married in 1998, after years of living together and when she became secretary general of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), the party she had joined eight years earlier.
“The Phantom of the Opera”
In Merkel’s early years at the Chancellery he was dubbed “the phantom of the opera” because he barely appeared in public more than at the Richard Wagner Festival in Bayreuth. In addition to being a professor, Sauer is a passionate wagnerianlike his wife.
Over time, he accompanied Merkel on official visits of a certain level or interest, G7 or G20 summits, trips to the United States – a country where she has temporarily resided for academic activities.
The press of the heart inquires from time to time on marriage; then he assures that he is going through a crisis or the opposite. The German Chancellery follows the rule of ignoring rumors.
It does transcend any photo of their vacations, in the past in Italy or La Gomera -Spain- and recently limited to mountain excursions, where they almost always appear with identical informal clothing and a face of a certain boredom.
Favorites and their wives
The Social Democrat Olaf Scholz is the poll favorite to succeed Merkel. It does not seem that, privately, he will follow the dynamics of the last Social Democratic Chancellor, Gerhard Schröder (1998/2005).
The successive marriages or separations of this politician led to a media circus. From his third wife, Hiltrud, a prominent member of his party, it was reported that he was banned from “currywurst” – typical sausage – for being a radical vegetarian, while the fifth and current, the Korean Kim-So-Yeon, was reported of the compensation that her ex-husband demands after leaving her.
Scholz and Britta Ernst, aged 63 and 60 respectively, form a marriage with shared political interests. They have been married since 1998, have no children and established their residence in Potsdam, the capital of Brandenburg, the “Land” that surrounds Berlin and whose government is Minister of Youth, Education and Sport.
It is not his first ministerial position on a regional scale for Ernst. Between 2014 and 2017 he held that portfolio in the “Land” of Schleswig Holstein. Before that, he was a member of the chamber of Hamburg, his hometown and to which the political career of Scholz, who was mayor-governor of the “land” between 2011 and 2018, is linked.
From Armin Laschet and his wife Susanne -60 and 59 years old- neither do we expect sensations for the press of the heart. The wife of the conservative candidate and prime minister of North Rhine-Westphalia, the most populous “Land” in the country, has little lavish in the media.
They are known to have met as members of the Children’s Choir in Aachen, their hometown. It is the first and only love known to the politician.
Like a good Rhenish, Laschet is usually jovial and a regular at his carnivals, often in risky disguises. His wife remains on the sidelines of these appearances.
They married in 1985 and have three children, Johannes, Eva and Julius. The first of them, 32 years old and known as Joe Laschet, did give a lot to talk about in the media.
It is considered a “influence” in the field of fashion, he is very active on social networks and his physical resemblance to American actor Ryan Gosling usually stands out.