Merkel's conservatives widen lead over Social Democrat rivals: poll

Merkel's conservatives widen lead over Social Democrat rivals: poll

PanARMENIAN.Net - German Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives widened the lead over their Social Democrat rivals, according to a poll published on Tuesday, May 23 which showed her party and the pro-business Free Democrats winning enough seats to govern together, Reuters reports.

A coalition of Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) and the liberal Free Democrats (FDP) would likely take a more fiscally conservative stance, especially on aid to Greece, than the current CDU-Social Democrat (SPD) government.

Tuesday's poll, conducted by Forsa for Stern magazine and RTL television, showed the CDU on 39 percent, 14 percentage points ahead of the SPD. The FDP were in third place for the first time in many years on 9 percent after pulling ahead of the Left party and the far-right Alternative for Germany party.

The FDP served as junior coalition partner to the CDU and its Bavarian sister party, the CSU, for almost half of federal Germany's post-war history, but dropped out of parliament after the 2013 election when it failed to win the minimum 5 percent.

The party's resurrection has come on the back of promises of tax cuts, higher infrastructure investment and a tough stance on Turkey and on financial support for Greece, which party leader Christian Lindner has said can only stay in the euro zone if it implements painful structural reforms.

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