International Relations (Archive)

In his last State of the Union Address in early January, US President Barack Obama told his fellow Americans to take heart: “The United States of America,” he said, “is the most powerful nation on Earth. Period.” Globally, however, scepticism is growing about whether the United States will be able to come to grips with its problems. The current American society is deeply divided, and Europe is watching the US election campaign with concern.

Barack Obama

You don't like a particular policy or a particular president? Then argue for your position. Go out there and win an election. Push to change it. But don't break it. Don't break what our predecessors spent over two centuries building.

Barack Obama, "Remarks on the Budget Deal", 2013

Further information

Contact

Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft
Unter den Linden 13/15
10117 Berlin

 

T. +49 (0)30 3407 3401
info.ahg@db.com

Partners

The event was organized together with BMW Foundation Herbert Quandt and in cooperation with the U.S. Association of Former Members of Congress (USAFMC).

Event Details

26 April 2016
6:00 p.m.

Friedrichsaal, Deutsche Bank
Unter den Linden 13/15
10117 Berlin

The event was held in English

As the presidential elections in November are coming closer, Europe is mesmerized by the results of the primaries. The candidates of both parties polarize. What significance do the upcoming elections have for both America and Europe’s future?

After the first primaries, America's future course is still written in the stars. While Donald Trump has been able to confirm his role as a winner among Republicans in the first states, it seems that Hillary Clinton will be the candidate for the Democrats.

What impact will the vote have on the transatlantic relationship? How will America itself change? In order to discuss the current developments and to take a look behind the medial scenes of the primaries, Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft and BMW Foundation Herbert Quandt sent invitations to discussions in Munich and Berlin. On the podium were Mary Bono, a former member of the US House of Representatives, for the Republican Party, and Carol Moseley Braun, a former US senator, for the Democratic Party. Georg Mascolo, head of the Joint Investigative Group of the NDR, WDR and Süddeutscher Zeitung moderated the discussion.

Carol Moseley Braun, Mary Bono, Georg Mascolo US Election

 Carol Moseley Braun and Mary Bono with moderator Georg Mascolo © Anna Schäflein

The audience was also able to take part in the debate: During the course of the debate, all guests had the opportunity to vote on central issues by iPod.

While the audience was above all convinced that the outcome of the election in the United States will have a major impact on German-American relations, only a smaller part believed the election results would lead to a fundamental change within the USA. Overall, Carol Moseley Braun and Mary Bono conveyed a surprisingly harmonious picture. They pointed out the polarizing role of the media in the perception of the primaries.

US Election Event

Discussion due to the upcoming US Election © Anna Schäflein

Thomas Matussek

Thomas Matussek, Managing Director, Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft © Anna Schäflein

Of particular difference was the way each presented the situation of their own party during the primaries. Mary Bono emphasized the disunity among Republicans, who only partly supported Trump’s candidature. In the worst case for the party, this could lead to division which would not necessarily be resolved by the definitive nomination of a candidate. Hillary Clinton however, according to Carol Moseley Braun, has a solid base in the party, which would unite behind the person selected following the nomination.

A number of central issues became the subject of controversial debate, not only between Democrats and Republicans, but also between the USA and Europe. These topics of debate included the TTIP agreement, the role of Putin, education reforms, growing populism on both sides of the Atlantic and the status of western democracies in general.

US Election Event
Questions from the audience © Anna Schäflein

Strengthening social cohesion within American society once again was seen by both candidates as the central domestic challenge for a future President. This includes encouraging young people to greater democratic participation and bringing the white lower class back into society.

Although the predominant opinion among the audience was that a President Trump would have a negative impact on the transatlantic relationship, optimism generally prevailed: America would continue to remain a reliable partner after the elections - of this almost two thirds were sure.

Further information

Contact

Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft
Unter den Linden 13/15
10117 Berlin

 

T. +49 (0)30 3407 3401
info.ahg@db.com

Downloads

Speakers' CVs
PDF download

Poll results of the event
PDF download

Event Details

26 April 2016
6:00 p.m.

Friedrichsaal, Deutsche Bank
Unter den Linden 13/15
10117 Berlin

The event was held in English