Merkel Wins Fourth Term

Sep 25, 2017

Germany’s Angela Merkel won a fourth term as Chancellor. But her win was overshadowed by the Alternative for Germany party’s surprise 13 percent showing. The AfD is now Germany’s third largest political party. It campaigned on a platform of being anti-immigration and anti-Islam. Outside of an AfD celebratory event, protestors “rallied outside, shouting “Nazis out!” The AfD was able to gain political traction for its message in the former German east block. As a minority party it may not have much official power, but it will have greater visibility and government financing. Turnout in the German election was up from 71.5 percent four years ago to 76 percent on Sunday. Merkel set out to win 40 percent of the vote but fell short. She said, "There's a big new challenge for us, and that is the entry of the AfD in the Bundestag. We want to win back AfD voters." Because Merkel’s party does not have a ruling majority, the party will have to form a coalition government which could be “a thorny, months-long process.”