Social Democrat and would-be German chancellor, Frank-Walter Steinmeier has unveiled his new shadow cabinet with a difference – it is packed with woman and young faces.
Steinmeier is struggling in his bid to unseat Angela Merkel in the run up to September’s federal election. He is 15 points behind in the opinion polls and hopes his new team which includes ten woman will pull in the voters. “We don’t just want more of the same – we want to start something better. That’s what our programme stands for. A team full of competence and experience,” Steinmeier said. But there is no place for SPD member and current Health Minister, Ulla Schmidt who returned home to public uproar after she took an official government car on holiday to Spain. Even without her, Steinmeier’s initiative may be too little too late as some critics say he lacks the dynamism to dent Merkel’s popularity.