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As Democratic convention closes, Germany adjusts to a pragmatic Obama

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Jae C. Hong/AP

(Read caption) No longer larger than life, but still popular in Germany: President Obama takes the stage at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., on Thursday.

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Gone are the days of candidate Barack Obama who inspired millions of Germans when he spoke at the Victory Column in Berlin in 2008. Four years later, in the wake of the Democratic National Convention, Germany is assessing the American president more soberly.

"In 2012, he is a man with gray hair and a spotty record," wrote the Financial Times Germany,  arguing that the president offered no new ideas or visions for a second term in the White House.

The Berlin-based left-wing daily taz.die tagezeitung wanted to hear more of a road map from President Obama, commenting: "Barack Obama is still a good rhetorician. But he didn't have that much to say." It gave former President Bill Clinton credit for the best speech in North Carolina.

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