News, Culture & Society

The Latest: Angela Merkel votes in Germany, seeks 4th term


Buying or leasing a car in the UK? Check MOT of car before you do.

BERLIN (AP) – The Latest on Germany’s national election on Sunday (all times local):

2:45 p.m.

Angela Merkel, who is seeking a fourth term as chancellor in Germany, has voted at a polling station near her home in Berlin’s Mitte neighborhood.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and her husband Joachim Sauer arrive to cast their vote in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Merkel and her husband Joachim Sauer, who shielded both of them with an umbrella against the cold drizzle, were surrounded by dozens of reporters as they cast their vote Sunday. The couple smiled and nodded at bystanders.

The chancellor’s conservative bloc has a healthy lead in the polls. Surveys in the last week show Merkel’s bloc leading with between 34 to 37 percent support, followed by the Social Democrats with 21 to 22 percent.

First exit polls are expected after German’s polling stations close at 6 p.m. (1600GMT).

___

8 a.m.

Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls in an election that is also likely to see the farthest right-wing party in 60 years, the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, win seats in parliament.

Merkel has campaigned on her record as chancellor for 12 years, emphasizing the country’s record-low unemployment, strong economic growth, balanced budget and growing international importance.

That’s helped keep her conservative bloc well atop the polls ahead of Sunday’s election over the center-left Social Democrats of challenger Martin Schulz.

___

8 a.m.

Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Party and its sister party, the Bavaria-only Christian Social Union, have governed Germany for the last four years with the Social Democrats in a “grand coalition.” Most forecasts suggest that coalition will win another majority in Sunday’s election outcome, but several different coalition government combinations could be possible.

The latest polls had Merkel’s conservative bloc at 34 to 37 percent support, the center-left Social Democrats with 21 to 22 percent and the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, or AfD, with 10 to 13 percent support.

Germany’s president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, appealed to his fellow citizens to go out and vote, because “these elections are also about the future of democracy and the future of Europe.”

Pollsters say many of the 61.5 million Germans who were eligible to vote had remained undecided until the very last moment.

___

8 a.m.

Countries across Europe have seen a rise of anti-migrant and populist parties in recent elections and several German pollsters have forecast that the anti-migrant, anti-Europe Alternative for Germany may come in as Germany’s third-strongest party.

The AfD appears assured of gaining seats in the national parliament for the first time.

The AfD has led an aggressive campaign that was dominated by hostile slogans against the more than 1 million mostly Muslim migrants who arrived in Germany in the last two years. They’re aiming to grab votes from conservatives who in the past have voted for Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party, but are unhappy with her welcoming stance toward refugees.

In addition to the Social Democrats and the AfD, the Greens, the Free Democratic Party and the Left Party were all poised to enter parliament with poll numbers between 8 and 11 percent.

___

David Rising and Kerstin Sopke contributed reporting from Berlin.

A man casts his vote in the German parliament election in Berlin Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Michael Kappeler/dpa via AP)

A man casts his vote in the German parliament election in Berlin Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Michael Kappeler/dpa via AP)

German chancellor Angela Merkel, front left, is accompanied by Stralsund mayor  Alexander Badrow, third right, as she takes a stroll through the old town of Stralsund, at the Baltic Sea, Germany, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 one day ahead of Germany's general elections on Sunday.  (Jens Buettner/dpa via AP)

German chancellor Angela Merkel, front left, is accompanied by Stralsund mayor Alexander Badrow, third right, as she takes a stroll through the old town of Stralsund, at the Baltic Sea, Germany, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 one day ahead of Germany’s general elections on Sunday. (Jens Buettner/dpa via AP)

German chancellor Angela Merkel drinks a cup of coffee with election campaign workers in Berlin, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 ahead of Germany's election on Sunday. (Michael Kappeler/dpa via AP)

German chancellor Angela Merkel drinks a cup of coffee with election campaign workers in Berlin, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 ahead of Germany’s election on Sunday. (Michael Kappeler/dpa via AP)

A picture of  German chancellor Angela Merkel can be seen behind the glass panes of the CDU headquarters  in Berlin, Germany,  Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 one day ahead of the German Federal elections. (Michael Kappeler/dpa via AP)

A picture of German chancellor Angela Merkel can be seen behind the glass panes of the CDU headquarters in Berlin, Germany, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 one day ahead of the German Federal elections. (Michael Kappeler/dpa via AP)

German chancellor Angela Merkel arrives at the harvest festival in Lauterbach, Germany on the Baltic Sea island of Ruegen, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017, one day ahead of the German Federal elections on Sunday. (Jens Buettner/dpa via AP)

German chancellor Angela Merkel arrives at the harvest festival in Lauterbach, Germany on the Baltic Sea island of Ruegen, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017, one day ahead of the German Federal elections on Sunday. (Jens Buettner/dpa via AP)

People take part in a demonstration of various left wing groups against German right wing party AfD (Alternative for Germany) in Berlin, Germany, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)

People take part in a demonstration of various left wing groups against German right wing party AfD (Alternative for Germany) in Berlin, Germany, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)

Runners start the 44th Berlin Marathon in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. In the background is the landmark Brandenburg Gate. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

Runners start the 44th Berlin Marathon in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. In the background is the landmark Brandenburg Gate. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

A voter casts for Germany's general election at a polling station in Berlin, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls, and this election is also likely to see the farthest right-wing party in 60 years, the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, win seats in parliament. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

A voter casts for Germany’s general election at a polling station in Berlin, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls, and this election is also likely to see the farthest right-wing party in 60 years, the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, win seats in parliament. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, stands in the election booth when casting his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Rolf Vennenbernd/dpa via AP)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, stands in the election booth when casting his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Rolf Vennenbernd/dpa via AP)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

A woman with a headscarf casts her vote in the German parliament election in Berlin Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Ralf Hirschberger/dpa via AP)

A woman with a headscarf casts her vote in the German parliament election in Berlin Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Ralf Hirschberger/dpa via AP)

Christian Lindner head of the German Free Democratic Party, FDP,  speaks during the election campaign in Duesseldorf, Germany, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. The pro-business party ejected from Germany's parliament four years ago is aiming for a strong comeback in Sunday's election, wooing voters with a dynamic young leader, a tough tone on eurozone strugglers and talk of a new immigration law. (Ina Fassbender/dpa via AP)

Christian Lindner head of the German Free Democratic Party, FDP, speaks during the election campaign in Duesseldorf, Germany, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. The pro-business party ejected from Germany’s parliament four years ago is aiming for a strong comeback in Sunday’s election, wooing voters with a dynamic young leader, a tough tone on eurozone strugglers and talk of a new immigration law. (Ina Fassbender/dpa via AP)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, is watched by his wife Inge, left, as he casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, is watched by his wife Inge, left, as he casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, gives a statement after casting his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, gives a statement after casting his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Inge Schulz, left, looks to her husband Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, as he casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Inge Schulz, left, looks to her husband Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, as he casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, holds his ballot as he casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, holds his ballot as he casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Anita Storch in a traditional Sorbian dress casts her vote in the German parliament election in Lehde, eastern Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Patrick Pleul/dpa via AP)

Anita Storch in a traditional Sorbian dress casts her vote in the German parliament election in Lehde, eastern Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Patrick Pleul/dpa via AP)

Anita Storch in a traditional Sorbian dress casts her vote in the German parliament election in Lehde, eastern Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Patrick Pleul/dpa via AP)

Anita Storch in a traditional Sorbian dress casts her vote in the German parliament election in Lehde, eastern Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Patrick Pleul/dpa via AP)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Martin Schulz, top candidate and chairman of the Social Democratic Party, casts his vote in the German parliament election in Wuerselen, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Schulz is challenging Chancellor Angela Merkel who is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

FILE - In this Jan. 27, 2017 photo German Chancellor Angela Merkel watches as Former German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeie and his successor and former German Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy, Sigmar Gabriel receive their notices of dismissal and their documents of appointment by German President Joachim Gauck in Berlin, Germany. Merkel is favored to win a fourth term in Germany's Sept. 24, 2017 election. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn, file)

FILE – In this Jan. 27, 2017 photo German Chancellor Angela Merkel watches as Former German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeie and his successor and former German Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy, Sigmar Gabriel receive their notices of dismissal and their documents of appointment by German President Joachim Gauck in Berlin, Germany. Merkel is favored to win a fourth term in Germany’s Sept. 24, 2017 election. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn, file)

FILE - In this Jan. 11, 2017 file photo German Chancellor Angela Merkel smiles as she leads this year's first cabinet meeting of the German government at the chancellery in Berlin. Chancellor Merkel will run for her fourth term in the German parliament election on Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017.  (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, file)

FILE – In this Jan. 11, 2017 file photo German Chancellor Angela Merkel smiles as she leads this year’s first cabinet meeting of the German government at the chancellery in Berlin. Chancellor Merkel will run for her fourth term in the German parliament election on Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, file)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel casts her vote during the parliament  election  in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (Kay Nietfeld/dpa via AP)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel casts her vote during the parliament election in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (Kay Nietfeld/dpa via AP)

German chancellor Angela Merkel right, and her husband Joachim Sauer arrive to cast their votes for the German parliament election  at a polling station in Berlin, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017.  Chancellor Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament.  (Christian Charisius/dpa via AP)

German chancellor Angela Merkel right, and her husband Joachim Sauer arrive to cast their votes for the German parliament election at a polling station in Berlin, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (Christian Charisius/dpa via AP)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel leaves the election booth as she casts her vote in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel leaves the election booth as she casts her vote in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, center, and her husband Joachim Sauer arrive to cast their votes in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, center, and her husband Joachim Sauer arrive to cast their votes in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and her husband Joachim Sauer arrive to cast their votes in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and her husband Joachim Sauer arrive to cast their votes in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and her husband Joachim Sauer arrive to cast their votes in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and her husband Joachim Sauer arrive to cast their votes in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls to elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier , and his wife Elke Buedenbender, left, cast their votes in the German parliament election in Berlin, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Bernd von Jutrczenka/dpa via AP)

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier , and his wife Elke Buedenbender, left, cast their votes in the German parliament election in Berlin, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Bernd von Jutrczenka/dpa via AP)

CORRECTS ORIENTATION OF THE IMAGE - The Reichstag building which hosts the German parliament is mirrored in a puddle in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, when Germans election a new parliament. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

CORRECTS ORIENTATION OF THE IMAGE – The Reichstag building which hosts the German parliament is mirrored in a puddle in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, when Germans election a new parliament. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

CORRECTS ORIENTATION OF THE IMAGE - The Brandenburg Gate is mirrored in a puddle in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

CORRECTS ORIENTATION OF THE IMAGE – The Brandenburg Gate is mirrored in a puddle in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

Head of the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, or AfD, Frauke Petry casts her vote in the German parliament election at a polling station in Leipzig, eastern Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Sebastian Willnow/dpa via AP)

Head of the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, or AfD, Frauke Petry casts her vote in the German parliament election at a polling station in Leipzig, eastern Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Sebastian Willnow/dpa via AP)

Head of the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, or AfD, Frauke Petry casts her vote in the German parliament election at a polling station in Leipzig, eastern Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Sebastian Willnow/dpa via AP)

Head of the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, or AfD, Frauke Petry casts her vote in the German parliament election at a polling station in Leipzig, eastern Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Sebastian Willnow/dpa via AP)

Head of the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, or AfD, Frauke Petry, right, is on her way to cast her vote in the German parliament election at a polling station in Leipzig, eastern Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Sebastian Willnow/dpa via AP)

Head of the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, or AfD, Frauke Petry, right, is on her way to cast her vote in the German parliament election at a polling station in Leipzig, eastern Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans go to the polls. (Sebastian Willnow/dpa via AP)

A woman wears an Angela Merkel mask during an anti-Nazi demonstration in front of the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, when Germans elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

A woman wears an Angela Merkel mask during an anti-Nazi demonstration in front of the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, when Germans elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

A German flag flutters over the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017 when Germans elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

A German flag flutters over the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017 when Germans elect a new parliament. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

Sorry we are not currently accepting comments on this article.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


Comments are closed.