WASHINGTON–The latest report on the Obama campaigns efforts to figure out how to highlight presumptive Democratic nominee Sen. Barack Obama (D-lll.) when he visits Germany on or about July 24 comes from AFP’s Berlin bureau has this lede:
BERLIN (AFP) German Chancellor Angela Merkel has slammed a request by Barack Obama to give a speech this month before the Brandenburg Gate as inappropriate, her deputy spokesman said Wednesday.
The conservative leader said that while she would be pleased to meet the US Democratic presidential
hopeful, it would be wrong for him to hold a “campaign rally” at the historic symbol of German unity.
“It is unusual to do electioneering abroad,” spokesman Thomas Steg told reporters.
“It is unusual to hold election rallies abroad. No German candidate for high office would even think of using the National Mall (in Washington)
or Red Square in Moscow for a rally because it would not be seen as appropriate.”
Authorities in the capital have confirmed that Obama plans to visit Berlin on July 24 and is interested in speaking at the foot of the Brandenburg Gate.
The left-leaning government of the city-state, which has the sole right to approve such a request, has not yet made a formal decision but Mayor Klaus Wowereit gave his backing Tuesday.