Six numbers to watch for in Germany's polls

AFP - [email protected] • 23 Sep, 2017 Updated Sat 23 Sep 2017 09:33 CEST
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As Germany heads to the polls on Sunday, here are six numbers to watch for - from pints to percentages and parliamentary debuts.



Angela Merkel is seeking four more years and a fourth term as chancellor. If she wins, as widely projected by opinion polls, she would be on track to rival the record held by Helmut Kohl, who served 16 years as chancellor.


Smaller parties in particularly will be anxiously watching to see if they can garner enough votes to cross the five-percent threshold to enter parliament.

Liberal party FDP, which in 2013 humiliatingly crashed out of the Bundestag after failing to meet the mark, is hoping for a comeback.


For the first time since the 1950s, a record seven parties are expected to enter parliament. The main newcomer is likely to be the hard-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) which could also become the third-strongest party.


Junior partners in Merkel's outgoing coalition, the Social Democratic Party, will be hoping for a score that's as far as possible from their all-time low of 23 percent - which they took in 2009.

Opinion polls suggest their support level is currently hovering even lower - at around 22 percent.


Merkel and her Christian Democratic Union may also be looking at their lowest score of 35.1 percent, a figure which in 1998 ended Helmut Kohl's reign and ushered in an SPD-led coalition with the Greens.


Since Merkel took power in 2005, drinkers at the Oktoberfest have downed 76.7 million litres of beer at the annual festival - the equivalent of around 30 Olympic-sized swimming pools.



AFP 2017/09/23 09:33

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