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Merkel's Party Suffers Defeat in State Elections

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TEHRAN, March 28 (ICANA) – Cheers and shouts at the headquarters of the Green Party. The results of the two state elections in Baden-Wuerttemberg and Rhineland- Palatinate saw massive gains for the once small environmentalist party.
Monday, March 28, 2011 9:54:04 AM
Merkel's Party Suffers Defeat in State Elections

Doubling and tripling their results they can now, for the very first time, even lead a new government - in Baden-Wuerttemberg where the Christian Democrats have ruled for nearly 58 years.

The Christian Democratic Union of Chancellor Merkel received 39 percent of the vote and became the strongest party in Baden-Wuerttemberg. But with the Greens at 24.2 percent and the Social Democrats at 23.1 percent the former opposition now holds the majority of seats; a serious blow in the heartland of the Christian Democratic Union.

Especially Chancellor Merkel's U-turn in nuclear politics from first extending the life span of Germany's nuclear reactors and then temporarily shutting down the seven oldest power plants in the light of the nuclear calamity in Fukushima did not persuade voters.

Merkel's coalition partner, the pro-business Free Democrats got their worst election result ever in Baden-Wuerttemberg and failed to get into the parliament of Rhineland-Palatinate. There the Social Democrats dropped nearly ten percent from their absolute majority but can now form a coalition with the Greens, the winners of this crucial Election Day in Germany.

Tough times lie ahead for Chancellor Merkel, as these elections were widely seen as a vote on her government. Analysts believe, the historic victory of the Greens and the poor performance of Merkel's coalition partner, the Free Democrats, might be the beginning of the end of her reign.

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