Yes, I'll post pictures.. (this should get A2K some extra pageviews on the long run..)
Gabriele Pauli is a politician for the deeply conservative Christian Social Union of Bavaria, Germany. She is "Landrätin" (district administrator, says the online dictionary) for Furth, her office is in the small town of Zirndorf.
She is, however, ambitious and outspoken. And she came into frontpage news when, speaking up with her doubts about CSU leader and Bavarian Prime Minister Edmund Stoiber, she paved the way for Stoiber's more discrete rivals to topple him.
Stoiber was PM for a generation's length, and in 2002 was the national Christian-Democratic candidate to become Germany's new Chancellor. A race he lost against Gerhard Schroeder, but not for lack of popular support from his home state. And many have not forgiven the "king's murderer", Gabriele Pauli. At a mass gathering of the CSU in Passau, 6000 "party friends" booed her, and yelled, "witch" and "pig".
It doesnt help that, to CSU standards, Pauli is unusually modern. When a Turkish journalist asked her if she would allow her 19-year old daughter to marry a Turk, she answered "If they love each other, why not?", ensuring a big headline in Hurriyet. She is newly divorced. She wears high heels and slightly shorter than knee-length skirts; senior party colleagues warned her that she should start wearing longer skirts. She drives a red Ducati motobike. After she had spoken up about Stoiber, the State Chancellory launched an informal investigation of her, apparently intended to unearth problems with men or alcohol.
In her own town, however, in the traditionally more liberal northern part of Bavaria, she is popular - she got two-thirds of the vote last time round. But she was heading for bigger things: "I need a new challenge, have the feeling that I can't bring new impulses to this office anymore." Instead, she speculated about being a Minister, or a future General Secratary of the party. She demanded more internal democracy in the CSU party
Now, however, she is in trouble. In a feature in the magazine Park Avenue
, she posed for a photoshoot - wearing a red wig, latex gloves, a black eyemask and a black minidress, while in the article saying, "I want to experience new things, steer big politics". "It was just something new for me, I never modelled for a glamour magazine before," she initially told Bild
, calling the shoot "photo art".
But on Wednesday, CSU politicians were indignant. "Her behaviour is out of the question. With this, she has convicted herself", said Hans-Peter Uhl, domestic policy speaker for the Christian-Democratic party in Germany's parliament. CSU MP Norbert Geis declared solemnly that politicians should maintain a degree of seriousness, and "Ms Pauli has violated this seriousness". He added, "she can't think that she can reach higher office within the CSU in this way".
Alas, Pauli promptly herself also protested the way the magazine had printed the article. Text and images "evoke an association with many observers that I can not accept", she said, complaining that "the selected, provocative layout" had not been agreed with her.
In another forthcoming article in Bunte
she is to be quoted saying that she can't exclude leaving the CSU in the longer term - "My home is with the CSU. But it can not remain a one-sided love in the long term." The Free Voters group has already made advances. "The CSU should become clear about what it holds for me".
Die Landratin von Furth: Gabriele Pauli - reizvoll, rot, rebellisch
Wirbel um Vamp-Fotos von Gabriele Pauli
OK, here's the photos.. All I can say, as just a 35-year old young 'un, thats one hell of a way of being 49. Respect
(Click for full view)