Angela Merkels CDU electoral supremacy on the line as Greens emerge as lead challengers

Germany: Greens will be 'more challenging' for CDU says expert

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Angela Merkel’s CDU party will face a tougher challenge from the Greens despite the party’s underwhelming performance in Sunday’s state elections. In a boost for the outgoing German Chancellor, the CDU Candidate in Saxony-Anhalt Reiner Haseloff held off a challenge from the nationalist Alternative for Germany party (AfD). Despite setbacks for the German Greens, DW Political correspondent Hans Brandt believes the party will still prove a considerable threat in September’s national elections.

Mr Brandt said: “On the national level the Greens will be a lot more challenging for the Conservatives than they have been in this state.

“And all the more or less second-ranking parties too will have a lot stronger showing on the national level.

“That does not go for the AfD, the AfD in fact nationally is weaker than it is here and in this state which is one of its core states.

“So the elections will give some sort of boost for the Conservatives but they are not at all a prediction of results for the end of September for the national election.”

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The CDU candidate won the election with 37.1 percent far ahead of his nearest rival AfDwith 20.8 percent.

Polling head of the vore had suggested a much tighter race.

In 2016, Ms Merkel’s party had managed to win the same seat with a little over 30 percent of the vote.

CDU secretary-general, Paul Ziemiak hailed the final result as “sensationally good.”

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The Greens have been tieing in the national polls with the German Chancellor’s party but scored a disappointing result of 5.9 percent in  Saxony-Anhalt.

Though the environmental party historically underperforms in states that make up former East Germany give the region’s ties to carbon-heavy industries.

Annalena Baerbock,  the Green party’s candidate to replace Ms Merkel, suggested her party’s supporters may have voted tactically in order to prevent the AfD from winning.

Voters “did not want right-wing extremists in the government,” she said.

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CDU state premier Reiner Haseloff has governed with the Greens and Social Democrats since 2016 but may now look to form a new agreement with the Social Democrats and Free Democratic party.

“We have won the election,” announced Mr Haslef after Sunday’s exit poll come out.

He added: “A great majority of our citizens have said we don’t want to be associated with the AfD.

“And for that I’m grateful.”

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