>> Standing for a fourth term and facing perhaps the biggest test of her career. Defending the status quo in Europe. German Chancellor Angela Merkel announcing on Sunday her intention to run for office again.>>
> Especially difficult when Merkel's Christian Democratic party has been hemorrhaging support, hurt by her decision to welcome migrants last year with open arms. The right-wing anti-immigrant AFD party surging at her expense, making strong gains in a slew of regional elections.
>> We have to recognize that Merkel is a flesh and blood politician. She's shown a ruthless streak in her 11 years in power so far, and a talent for survival. And I think she's clearly got in her sights the 16 years that her former mentor Helmut Kohl served in office, and she'd like to match that.
>> With the surprise triumph of Donald Trump in the US elections, some analysts have named Merkel the new leader of the free world, the liberal West's last defender.>> If I were here and I were German, and->> But while Obama has called Merkel his closest world partner, she's unlikely to find such a friend in Trump, who's challenged her views on everything from free trade to immigration.
At home and in Europe too, Merkel is starting to look somewhat isolated.>> What's more, is that the European establishment has actually turned on Germany on economic policy, on fiscal policy. The European Commission is demanding that Berlin abandon its fiscal discipline and spend more money to help support the struggling economy in the rest of the Euro zone.
And that's a difficult message for German politicians to sell to their voters.>>
Polls still put Merkel in the lead, but if recent events have taught us anything, nothing is certain.