They are two interesting and special personalities: The first Afro-American president and the first female chancellor. The most powerful man in the world and the most powerful woman in the world (at least recently).
The world is watching them, everything they do and say is high-profile. A pressure we cannot imagine lies on them. Every step has to be planned. They have to make decisions that concern a whole country.
How would you feel and present yourself if you were in this position?
Obama is the liberal, open-minded and entertaining president. Merkel is the conservative, stiff and inscrutable chancellor. Nevertheless, there is private information that is not spread all over the world. When you take a closer look, you can note that Obama was presenting himself very openly and charming during the elections 2008 to canvass voters. He could impress and convince the Americans by this special sort of election campaigning. We think that the American mentality is different from the German mentality. It is said that German voters prefer a serious election campaigning that is foucssing on the political issues. Obama was an example for Merkel because he showed her how to encourage the youth to vote. She learned from him how to present herself and tried to overcome the distance between her and the younger generation.
Of course, Obama and Merkel did not drop their pants. Obama revealed more information about his private life during the election in 2008. But when he became president he began to be more restrained. Merkel has been critized for being too distant and not really exposing which ideas she stands for. She also has been more present during the election campaigning, but all in all she doesn’t reveal a lot about herself.
Nevertheless, we should not forget that the media also plays an important role in characterizing the politicians. We are under the impression that the American press is more interested in the privacy of the politicians than the German press. It seems to us that the American population is more involved in the election campaigning and also more active, for example they donate money for their candidate. Therefore, the Americans might want to know a lot more about their candidates than the Germans.
We think that politicians should reveal some information about their private life because the voters can get to know them better. Moreover it is an endeavor of the press to inform the population about important facts to which private issues sometimes belong, too. To sum up, the focus of the press and the candidates should nevertheless be on the political issues.