>> As Germans clipped Chancellor Angela Merkel's wings, France's president is preparing to unveil his plans for reforming the European Union. On Tuesday night, Emmanuel Macron will set out his much promised vision, including proposals for a separate eurozone budget. But the German election result is likely to complicate his far-reaching ambitions, Merkel had indicated her willingness to work with Macron on a reform agenda.
Instead, her conservatives saw their support slide on Sunday, and Merkel is now facing a difficult coalition-building task which in turn could limit her flexibility on Europe. One of her likely partners, the liberal Free Democrats, have already criticized Macron's ideas. And the timing of his speech is likely to be interpreted as an attempt to shape the debate in Germany before coalition talks begin.
Merkel on Monday struck a note of caution with respect to France's calls for deeper European integration. Stating her bloc would support sensible measures, but also wanted to see countries become more competitive.>> I won't name anything now that I exclude, and I won't draw any red lines. The CDU, CSU will support what's reasonable.
>> Her reserved tone may unsettle Macron. Just last week he was backed up by Germany as the two countries reacted to British Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit speech, with both seeking more clarification before anything can advance.