Last week Martin Schulz, the president of the European Parliament, announced he would resign from his position and return to the German political scene. The announcement was long awaited by the German media. But it should have been a topic for all the European countries - with one of the top European politicians resigning. Was it? We asked people around tourist spots in Paris and asked students of Sciences Politique, a prestigious French university. Surprisingly few of them were aware of the news, or even who Schulz was. But the ones who did had strong opinions:
The media had been speculating about Schulz's departure for quite a while. This step had been preceded by the appointment of Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the present foreign minister and top candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SPD), as a presidential candidate on 16 November 2016. Immediately, politicians and the media had started looking for someone to take Steinmeier's spot, and turned towards the same person: Martin Schulz. He might take the position of the foreign minister first - and will most likely run as a top candidate in the elections for the German parliament in Fall 2017 where he will face chancellor Angela Merkel of the CDU as an opponent. While Schulz's resignation might be a gain for the national SPD, it is a worrying and disappointing loss for Europe.