German party on the ropes

Dhaka,  Sat,  22 July 2017
Published : 19 Apr 2017, 14:05:07
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German party on the ropes

After Donald Trump’s surprise win last year and the Brexit vote in the UK, many thought Germany was also set for a populist surge that would change its political landscape forever, according to a global media report Wednesday.

 Yet the signs are that the German party AfD juggernaut could run out of road way before September.

Now the AfD is on the ropes. Dogged by controversy and internal splits, its poll ratings have slipped from 16 per cent in September to 11 per cent, according to Infratest dimap, the pollsters. 

It is not just the inner strife: the AfD is also suffering from changing popular perceptions of Germany’s refugee problem, an issue that is still its calling card. The massive influx of migrants over the past two years and the strain on the social fabric and economic resources once led every news bulletin: now it is barely mentioned.

The AfD has also been overshadowed by Martin Schulz, the new leader of the left-of-centre Social Democrats, who is seen by many voters as a real alternative to Ms Merkel - rather than the AfD. 

- SZ-
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