German political rivals agree - No lottery for me

Angela Merkel

Angela Merkel

"All Western democracies, including the USA and Germany, are seeing powerful protest movements. against globalization and integration", she says.

A new party emerges: According to NPR, Merkel and the Christian Democratic Union will win the election.

The Financial Times average of the seven latest polls gives the CDU/CSU 30 percent, the SPD 23 percent, AfD 11 percent, FDP and the Left on 10 and the Greens on 8. Germany's two mainstream political parties are broadly popular.

But the party is poised to gain significant new influence over the national debate.

Hammer, the data analyst, said political ads created to target specific groups on Facebook may have a greater effect on Germany's election. Most recently, there was parliamentary approval for same-sex marriage (though she personally voted against it).

Founded in the nineteenth century, the country's oldest political party acted initially as an umbrella organization for a number of leftist movements, trade unionists, and communists before becoming more centrist.

Climate change, social justice and labour market policy are also topics that affect us all - regardless of whether we are Christians, Muslims, Jews, Buddhists or atheists.

The SPD's relationship with the CDU has been both its success and its downfall.

Party leaders believe the few migrants who are allowed to remain have a duty to fully integrate into German society, emphasizing the primacy of the German language and traditional German culture.

Hurdles: Merkel's natural caution coupled with Germans' fear of instability, a legacy of the fragmentation in the years that preceded the rise of Hitler's Nazi party.

It's campaigning for a rise in the national minimum wage and an end to welfare cuts as well as the rejection of military missions overseas and the dissolution of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

To be sure, Dengler wishes that Merkel would reduce the regulatory burden on German companies-which face an average corporate tax rate of 14.5 percent-although he doesn't expect that she will. It promotes a free economy and individual liberty. But the SPD risks sliding into irrelevance with a third straight term of playing junior partner to Merkel, and may prefer to rebuild in opposition. During the last sitting of the lower house of parliament - the Bundestag - before this election, he described her as having been "always fair, always resilient".

The AfD has called for sealing the European Union's borders, instituting rigorous identity checks along Germany's national borders and setting up holding camps overseas to prevent migrants from leaving for Germany in the first place. It is inherent to Germany's political system, which essentially forces parties to think about negotiating possible coalitions with others, even before campaigning has even started.

The Greens pushed through a nuclear power phase-out and enacted laws easing immigration and same-sex civil partnerships. They put Schulz's Social Democrats around or below the 23 per cent they won in their worst showing yet in post-World War II Germany, in 2009.

Younger SPD voters are unimpressed with their party's performance since entering the coalition.

And then there is the great unkown. In addition to the AfD, and Merkel's CDU, Germans will cast votes for the center-left Social Democratic Party (SDP), led by Martin Shulz; the libertarian Free Democratic Party (FDP); The Left (Die Linke); and the Greens (Die Gruenen).

And speaking of volatility, not only is Germany's DAX Index one of the top performing equity gauges this month (ranked sixth in local currency terms among more than 90 major benchmarks tracked by Bloomberg), but volatility has tumbled. The party looks set to win seats at the federal level for the first time.

Since its founding in 2013, the party, led by economist Alice Weidel and former CDU politician Alexander Gauland, has been shaking up the German political landscape. Its anti-immigrant and anti-Islamic agenda gained popularity as Merkel opened Germany's door to immigrants.

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