The second of nine regional elections to be held in Germany in 2011 was expected to be a major test for Angela Merkel’s government. However, the electorate in Saxony-Anhalt finally granted another four-year mandate to the CDU (Christian Democrat) and SPD (Social Democrat), that garnered 33% and 22% respectively. In its editorial, Tageszeitung remarks on the unshakeable position of the “eternal grand coalition,” in an election where there was no real winner but a definite loser in the shape of the extreme-right NPD, which did not obtain the requisite 5% of the vote needed to occupy seats in the regional parliament. The alternative daily further laments the CDU and SPD’s refusal to govern with Die Linke, a political grouping partly descended from the Communist Party that ruled the ex-GDR, second placed with a score of 24%. “No matter who wins, the CDU and the SPD continue to hold power with an eternal grand coalition which is harmful to political culture,” insists TAZ.
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