[Home]  [Headlines]  [Latest Articles]  [Latest Comments]  [Post]  [Mail]  [Sign-in]  [Setup]  [Help]  [Register] 

What kind of necktie knot do you like?

My interview with Investigative Reporter Greg Ciola

Massive price increases on EpiPens raise alarm

Libertarian Elected Mayor of South Africa’s Largest City

Exclusive Excerpt from Ann CoulterÂ’s New Book: The Reality TV Star WeÂ’ve Been Waiting for!

Puerto Rico’s $70 Billion Defaulted Debt Jumps to $113 Billion

Mom Killed Infant ... By Putting Him --- In Refrigerator

Many donors to Clinton Foundation met with her at State

Obama’s ... Biggest --- Mistake

Southern Command Warns Sunni Extremists Infiltrating From South

Pat Buchanan: A Eulogy For John McLaughlin–Ave Atque Vale!

EXCLUSIVE: Missing: FBI files linking Hillary Clinton to the 'suicide' of White House counsel Vince Foster have vanished from the National Archives

Phillipines shows the way

Children of the American Police State: Just Another Brick in the Wall

GOP EPA Chiefs Endorse Clinton over Trump’s “Profound Ignorance of Science”

State trooper shoots dead an unarmed deaf mute father who was trying to communicate via sign language after being pulled over for a speeding violation

Cuomo wants the government to pay union workers higher wages

Private lives are exposed as WikiLeaks spills its secrets

my poem ... indian prayer --- for Sunday

Born Again Christians need to watch this

obama anti Chriist - anti west legacy ... bolshevik marxism --- war - hate - revenge - genocide - holocaust - hutuism !

Don't insult ... Ma - Pa Kettle --- They were good folk !

German Government Urges Citizens To Stockpile Food, Water "In Case Of Attack Or Catastrophe"

Insulin price spike leaves diabetes patients in crisis

Ibiza holiday flight terror after 'police officer's GUN goes off inside cabin in front of shocked passengers'

White Lives Matter protesters gather outside NAACP

Election Update: National Polls Show The Race Tightening — But State Polls Don’t

Three chemical elements you should always consider

Trucker with Naked Wife in Cab Sentenced to 20 Years for Hitting School Bus

Huma Abedin worked at a radical Muslim journal for a dozen years

Trump now says he plans to legalize some undocumented immigrants (Amnesty)

Does all voting happen on Election Day? Think again

Trump adviser: He hasn't made a 'firm commitment' about deporting Illegal Aliens

Presidential Olympics: The State Poll Scores That Trump Needs for a National Victory

No English? No problem! New York City cab drivers won't have to learn the language to qualify for a license

Gun Owners of America: Disarming Good Guys Does Not Disarm Bad Guys

Donald Trump’s companies have at least $650 million in debt and one of the lenders is the Bank of China

'Privilege Board' gets prominent placement at App State

The Colonel’s original chicken recipe found in scrapbook (11 herbs and spices)

NostraBeckus Returns! Glenn Predicts ‘Absolute Bloodbath’ from Bannon; Trump Campaign Pivots to Humility

Powell has 'no recollection' of Clinton email dinner conversation

Something Different: Really Good Movies That Are Mostly Depressing In Nature

WATCH: Sheriff Joe Reveals the Donald Trump the Establishment Doesn’t Want You to Know

Class Action Lawsuit Against Debbie Wasserman Schultz Moves Forward

NEW: Donald Trump's First General Election Ad, "Two Americas". MAGA! HD

Trump Isn’t Tweeting About The Polls Anymore

What I See Happening In a Trump Presidency

New Gun Control Idea: Take Guns from Senior Citizens

This doll in a hot car was so lifelike that a cop gave it CPR after smashing window

Obama irks La. flood victims with memo warning them not to discriminate


Status: Not Logged In; Sign In

International News
See other International News Articles

Title: Merkel's Party Routed In Big German State
Source: REUTERS
URL Source: http://www.reuters.com/article/2012 ... w-result-idUSBRE84C09G20120513
Published: May 13, 2012
Author: REUTERS
Post Date: 2012-05-13 19:31:51 by Brian S
Keywords: None
Views: 421

By Stephen Brown

DUESSELDORF, Germany | Sun May 13, 2012 12:49pm EDT

(Reuters) - Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives suffered a crushing defeat on Sunday in an election in Germany's most populous state, a result which could embolden the left opposition to step up its criticism of her European austerity policies.

The election in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), a western German state with a bigger population than the Netherlands and an economy the size of Turkey, was held 18 months before a national election in which Merkel is expected to fight for a third term.

She remains popular in Germany for her steady handling of the euro zone debt crisis, but the sheer scale of her party's defeat leaves her vulnerable at a time when a backlash against her insistence on fiscal discipline is building across Europe.

According to first projections, the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) won 38.8 percent of the vote and will have enough to form a stable majority with the Greens, who scored 12.2 percent.

The two left-leaning parties had run a fragile minority government for the past two years under popular SPD leader Hannelore Kraft, whose decisive victory on Sunday could propel her to national prominence.

Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) saw their support plunge to just 25.8 percent, down from nearly 35 percent in 2010, and the worst result in the state since World War Two.

"This is not a good evening for Merkel," said Gero Neugebauer, a political scientist at Berlin's Free University.

"The SPD is strengthened by this election, which will stir things up in Berlin."

The blow comes only two days before France's new president, Socialist Francois Hollande, is due to visit Berlin and press Merkel for a shift away from austerity and more emphasis on growth-oriented measures in Europe.

Other big countries like Italy also want Merkel to take a more balanced approach to the debt crisis and an election in Greece last week showed massive public resistance to tough austerity.

SPD MOMENTUM

Hollande's victory, coupled with the NRW result, is bound to give the SPD, which still trails Merkel in national opinion polls, new momentum before the federal vote in the autumn of 2013.

The chancellor needs the support of her rivals to pass a new "fiscal compact" that is meant to anchor budget discipline across the EU. The SPD is already pressing her to delay a parliamentary vote on the pact, keen for her to commit to new growth measures beforehand.

Many in her party will blame the result on regional leader Norbert Roettgen, Merkel's environment minister in Berlin, who bungled his campaign early on by refusing to commit to staying in the state in the event of a loss.

Roettgen ran on a platform of budget consolidation in a state that, with 180 billion euros in debt, is Germany's most indebted. Kraft, on the other hand, advocated a go-slowly approach to debt reduction, emphasizing the need to invest in cities, education and childcare.

In that sense, the result will be seen by some as a double defeat for Merkel. Voters in NRW not only rejected her party but also the austerity measures that she has forced on struggling southern states like Greece, Spain and Portugal.

The Free Democrats (FDP), a pro-business party that rules in coalition with Merkel's conservatives at the federal level, scored 8.6 percent to make it back into the state assembly. The party hailed the result as proof of a comeback after a collapse in support over the last three years.

The upstart Pirates, a new party that campaigns for internet freedom, continued their strong run at regional level, making it into their fourth straight state parliament, winning 7.6 percent of the vote.

NRW, a diverse state with struggling cities in the rust-belt Ruhr region and home to one third of Germany's blue-chip companies, has a history of influencing national politics.

Seven years ago, a humiliating loss for then-Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's SPD in the state prompted him to call early elections, which he subsequently lost to Merkel.

Post Comment   Private Reply   Ignore Thread  


[Home]  [Headlines]  [Latest Articles]  [Latest Comments]  [Post]  [Mail]  [Sign-in]  [Setup]  [Help]  [Register] 

Please report web page problems, questions and comments to webmaster@libertysflame.com