Merkel’s CDU braced for litmus test election in eastern Germany

Berlin, Jun 6 (EFE).- The conservative party of German chancellor Angela Merkel and the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) are going head-to-head in elections taking place in eastern state of Saxony-Anhalt on Sunday.

The regional vote is considered a final litmus test before the general election in September.

Incumbent minister president Reiner Haseloff of the Christian Democratic Union party is looking for a third and final term in Saxony-Anhalt, having held the position since 2011.

He has ruled out forming a coalition with left or far-right parties.

Haseloff’s first regional executive in Saxony-Anhalt was a collaboration between the CDU and the center-left SPD and his second brought in the Greens, giving birth to what is known as the Kenya coalition, so-called because the colors of each party match the African nation’s flag.

Two surveys released on Thursday offered uncertain predictions for Sunday’s polling.

The Politbarometer survey published by public TV station ZDF put the CDU out in front with 30% of the vote and a clear lead over AfD.

A separate survey by Civey, which was published by the Der Spiegel newspaper, gave the CDU 29% of the vote and the AfD 28%.

Behind the center-right and far-right parties, the Left was poised to take 11.5%, the SPD 10%, the Greens 9% and the liberal Free Democratic Party 6.5%, according to the ZDF poll.

In the previous elections in 2016, the CDU took 29.8% of the vote and the AfD 24.3%.

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