LIVE - German Federal Elections: AfD wants to “hunt Merkel down”

, by The editorial board of Treffpunkt Europa

LIVE - German Federal Elections: AfD wants to “hunt Merkel down”
The Reichstag building that hosts the German Parliament Foto: Flickr / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0-Lizenz

Today, Germany is going to vote for a new parliament. The New Federalist is following the federal elections with live updates.

18:13 CEST: SPD says: not another Merkel government with CDU/CSU

SPD leader Oppermann says that centre-left SPD will not support Merkel another time in government.

18:00 CEST: AfD wins election, wants to “hunt Merkel down”

Far-right AfD enters parliament and receives 14%, first exit polls. Alexander Gauland, party leader, says he wants to “hunt Merkel down” and “take our volk [ethnic term for people] back”.

17:25 CEST: British perspective on the election

The British papers also publish articles on the election in Germany. There is an overwhelming preoccupation that Angela Merkel (CDU) will win the race, but the AfD will have a difficult period of government.

The Guardian probably calls an election victory by Angela Merkel and pulls the comparison with Helmut Kohl. That the AfD is possibly the third strongest force, the Guardian sees with concern; especially in the East, Merkel had to put criticism into the election campaign. Such a degree of sharpness had not been known to her previous election campaigns.

For the first time with the AfD a right-wing extremist party has a realistic chance to move into the Bundestag, so the telegraph. A continuation of the Grand Coalition is therefore the only interesting and conceivable option for Angela Merkel.

Like the Dutch and French press, the focus of British newspapers is clearly on the official. No one seems to believe in a surprise on election day. (TS)

3:35 pm: Turnout: 41.1%

The turnout in Germany at 1400 CEST was 41.1%. In 2013 it was 41.4%.

3:16 pm: 100,100 Germans abroad vote

100,000 Germans registered for voting from abroad. The number has doubled since 2013.

2:13 pm: The Dutch perspective on the election

In the Netherlands, too, we are eagerly awaiting the outcome of the Bundestag election.

An election victory for the Union is also expected from our western neighbors. The “Algemeen Dagblad” calls Angela Merkel even indestructible.

The left-liberal daily “De Volkskrant” considers Merkel’s critical position critically and makes her jointly responsible for the strengthening of the AfD. The rise of the right-wing populist party was the “change-money” for Merkel’s policy.

Under the heading “Germany is also a slow Internet, poverty and unused billions”, the NOS public service broadcaster points to existing problems in Germany. For example, it is emphasized that Germany is a rich country, but not everyone benefits from it. Moreover, the state of schools and other public institutions is bad. Good to know: While the average Internet speed in the Netherlands is 70 MBit / s and record speeds of more than 100 MBit / s are not a rarity, it is since 2011 on average only 15 MBit / s. (TS)

+++ 14:45 CEST: High turnout - in the cities+++

The first numbers being published about the turnout indicate a rise in turnout - especially in big cities.

+++ 13:08 CEST: Coalition government+++

As German is traditionally used to coalition government, it will be difficult to form a coalition this time as many in the centre-left SPD of Martin Schulz are unwilling to enter another Grand Coalition under Merkel’s CDU. At the same time, the only other realistic option would be a “Jamaica coalition”, which would include Merkel’s CDU and her sister party “CSU” plus the Liberals and the Greens. But Greens, CSU and FDP would have to overcome massive ideological difference to make this coalition come true. (TS)

+++ 13:00 CEST: Turnout on the rise +++

Turnout at most ballot stations is on the rise, between 1 and 8 points at 12 pm CEST. No nationals results have been published yet. (TS)

+++ 12:20 CEST: Brexit refugees are voting+++

At least 3,000 former UK citizens, who left Britain after Brexit, are voting today for the first time as German citizens. (TS)

+++ 10:20 CEST: Median Age +++

The median age in the German election is one of the highest of the world. 50% of voters are older than 52 years. (TS)

+++ 8:00 CEST: Ballot boxes have opened +++

More than 60 million citizens in 299 voting districts may vote today for the 19th German parliament today. The ballot boxes will be closed at 6pm. The first live polls will be published soon afterwards. (DZ)

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