Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative bloc won a fourth consecutive term in German elections on
Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and its Bavarian sister party Christian Social Union (CSU) won 33 percent, down from 41.5 percent in the last federal election in 2013, according to the official provisional election results.
It was the worst result of German conservatives since the end of World War II.
Merkel’s CDU/CSU bloc still achieved a 12.5 point lead over their major rival Social
The German Chancellor said after the elections that she would seek to form a stable coalition government, either a "grand coalition” with the Social
During a post-election party leaders’ discussion on ARD television on Sunday night, Merkel said she noted SPD leader Martin Schulz’s opposition to a new grand coalition.
But Merkel also made it clear that she does not want to form a minority government, at a time of major international and domestic challenges.
Far-right AfD surges into parliament
The far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD), which took an anti-immigration and anti-Islamic line during the election campaign, managed to get into the federal parliament for the first time.
Riding a sharp increase in voter support, it achieved 13 percent, making the AfD third-largest political group in the Bundestag.
Four years ago, the AfD failed to pass the five percent threshold and was unable to enter the federal parliament.
It became the first far-right party to enter the Bundestag since the 1960s, showing the refugee crisis’ large impact on German society.
Historic defeat for SPD
Merkel’s major rival Social Democratic Party (SPD) suffered its biggest defeat since 1949, as it was down to 20.5 percent.
Addressing a crowd of SPD supporters at party headquarters on Sunday night, Schulz said the Social Democrats would not enter a new “grand coalition” with Merkel’s Christian Democrats.
Schulz said that
Potential coalition partners
Merkel said before the elections that she was open to all possible coalition options, except a partnership with the far-right AfD or the socialist Left Party.
The liberal Free Democrats (FDP), one of the Christian Democrats’ potential coalition partners, managed to win 10.7 percent.
Another potential coalition partner, the environmentally minded Greens, won 8.9 percent, up from 8.4 percent in federal elections in 2013.
The socialist Left Party also managed to slightly increase its support, reaching 9.2 percent.
Number of seats in Bundestag
The latest projection of ZDF television showed that a possible three-party coalition of Christian Democrats, liberal Free
Merkel’s conservative bloc CDU/CSU was projected to win 246 seats
The far-right AfD was to become the third largest political group at the Bundestag with 94 seats.
Among Merkel’s potential coalition partners, FDP was predicted to win 80
Projections forecasted that the opposition Left Party would win 69 seats.