BERLIN - It was all well planned out: Step-by-step, Angela Merkel would leave the political stage knowing that her legacy will be preserved and in good hands.
In December 2018 she resigned as party chair, enthroning her loyal and politically centrist follower Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer as successor. The former general secretary of the conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) was also designated to run for Chancellor once Dr Merkel would be gone.
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