September 3, 2013
In a television debate Merkel danced around a third Greek bailout. She is largely expected to stick to a cautious stance on the issue ahead of the September 22 general election. Any additional packages for Greece are very unpopular with German taxpayers.
“It’s possible that there will be a new aid package for Greece. Nobody knows how big,” Merkel said in the televised debate on Sunday.
Though the size of a third bailout to Greece remains in question, the very issue of providing further financial aid to Athens seems to be a decided deal. Last week Merkel repeated Greece might need another money injection in 2014, though denying a further debt write-down.
Angela Merkel is selling herself as the person who led Germany out of the economic crisis that Greece initiated. The chancellor blamed her predecessor Gerhard Schroeder for letting Greece into the euro zone. However, since within the currency union, Greece’s chances of receiving more financial aid from Germany are high. Merkel insists she will keep on pushing for reform in return.
“My job as chancellor is to ensure that the reform pressure on Greece doesn’t let up,” Merkel said in the televised debate with opponent Peer Steinbrueck, who served as Merkel’s first-term finance minister.