segunda-feira, 14 de março de 2016

Germany: regional elections test Merkel's resistance

This Sunday 13 million Germans are called to the polls-voters of three federal States. With the refugee issue in the background and the 18 months of the legislation, this ballot will be an endurance contest for the party of Angela Merkel, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), six months after the Chancellor decided to open the doors to the wave of refugees.

The elections are held in two neighboring States of France, Baden-Württemberg (Baden-Wurtemberg) and Rhineland-Palatinate (Rheinland-Pfalz), and in upper Saxony (Sachsen-Anhalt), a region of the former German Democratic Republic.

Merkel has resisted the calls insistent within her party to imposing limits on the reception of asylum seekers. After seeing his popularity rate down to histori c lows, managed to reverse the trend â€" according to opinion polls, 50 percent of Germans support Chancellor, with 13% prefer social democrat Sigmar Gabriel.

The dissatisfaction caused by the arrival of more than a million applicants for asylum over the last year has strengthened the alternative for Germany (AfD), nationalist and anti-immigration party, which records 10% support nationally. The party attracts disgruntled with unemployment in the former East and the right wing of the CDU from Merkel.

Opinion polls predict that CDU keep the power in Saxony, where the Social Democrats govern with the SPD, but victories in Baden-Württemberg, where dominate the Greens, and in Rhineland-Palatinate, where the SPD is at risk of being away, after 25 years in power.

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