Well, sort of.
In a theoretical German election, President Obama, it appears, handily would defeat Mrs. Merkel.
After revelations that the National Security Agency was spying on foreigners here, YouGov conducted a poll that found Mr. Obama still remains the most popular politician in Germany. People here may be upset about the spying allegations — but, apparently, not enough to change their minds.
Three out of four Germans said Mr. Obama gives the United States a good image internationally, according to the poll, while 65 percent said they would vote for him if they could.
Still, pollsters admit it’s all an exercise in make-believe.
Germans appreciate that Mrs. Merkel has responded to struggling countries, such as Greece, by demanding a strict line of austerity, including tax increases and spending cuts, in return for aid.
But even Mrs. Merkel can’t compete with Mr. Obama and his perceived charisma.
Mr. Obama is a borderline celebrity here. He always has been popular in Germany, though some of the enthusiasm has soured over the years.