Berlin, Germany is a celebrating the re-election of popular gay Mayor Klaus “Wowi” Wowereit, who has become a more powerful force in German politics. Berliners are said to be pleased with him because he embodies the city’s tolerant and cosmopolitan image.
Berlin Mayor Klaus Wowereit hugged his life partner Jörn Kubicki after results were revealed showing he had won re-election on Sunday.
Berliner Zeitung, a Berlin newspaper reported that ‘Wowi” as he is affectionately called, celebrate his win Sunday by giving his partner Jörn a firm, fond hug on stage at a Social Democrats meeting as party workers chanted his nickname: “Wowi, Wowi!”
Conservative challenger Friedbert Pflüger’s attempt to slag “Wowi” by referencing his sexual orientation backfired, as he made a political muck-racking rally call of “Berlin deserves its own First Lady for a change!”
Berliners are said to feel “Wowi” enhances Berlin’s image as a grown up and sophisticated cultural city. He has taken cues from Austrian ex-patriate California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s playbook by casting Berlin as a cool destination for filmakers, and other creatives making Berlin a magnet for artists, fashion designers, writers and high-profile exhibitions. Tourism is up too.
Wowereit’s honesty regarding his personal business has made inroads for the Gay community overall in Germany. There is still a divide in Germany with regards to moral issues, with the Protestant north tending to be more liberal than the Catholic traditional and conservative south.
German voters are not as seemingly interested in their politicians’ private lives than are the voters in Britain or the United States. Berliner Zeitun reports that Former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder was up to his fourth wife, and ex-foreign minister Joschka Fischer working on his fifth marriage, but most people could have cared less.
Germans also elected Merkel, Germany’s first woman chancellor. She is childless and Protestant, and from the former communist east, yet she became candidate for the western, Catholic, male-dominated Christian Democrats. Her win was achieved by a narrow margin.
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