Wolfgang Bosbach, 61, from Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party was asked on a celebrity version of the quiz show why the WM66 brand of washing machine was so legendary in former East Germany.
His options were: a) it could generate electricity for heating, b) you could use it to boil food, c) it could also be used as a vacuum cleaner, or d) it received radio signals from West Germany.
Stuck on the €500,000 question, Bosbach decided to phone a friend – Merkel. But after the chancellor failed to pick up the second time, he joked she was busy “saving the world”.
— Wolfgang B. (@WolfgangBosbach) June 2, 2014
Bosbach failed to pick the right answer (b) and left the show with €125,000. He said he later got a text from Merkel asking him what he wanted.
“I’m not sure I would’ve done her a favour if she’d answered the phone,” Bosbach said. “I don’t know if she would’ve known the answer.”
The show was also a great success for broadcaster RTL with 7.67 million people watching it, it highest figure since 2011.