Merkel’s German Conservatives Could Win Absolute Majority: Poll

German Chancellor Angela Merkel faced pressure from conservative allies  to run for a fourth term in 2017 after an opinion poll showed they could win an absolute majority if an election were held next week, reports

The results of the poll came a day after Der Spiegel news magazine said in an unsourced report that Merkel, who turned 61 on July 17, had decided to run for a fourth term and had started planning her 2017 re-election campaign.

Horst Seehofer, head of the Bavarian Christian Social Union (CSU) sister party to Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU), quickly took up the idea of the conservatives winning an absolute majority in 2017.

“I believe that is possible with a Chancellor Angela Merkel,” he told ARD television.

Merkel has been chancellor since 2005, first in a grand coalition with the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD), then with the small pro-business Free Democratic Party (FDP), and now a second time with the SPD.

The CDU/CSU has not had an absolute majority since Konrad Adenauer’s third term as chancellor ended in 1961.

The Emnid poll for the weekly newspaper Bild am Sonntag put support for Merkel’s CDU and the CSU at 43 percent.

The survey of 1,860 people showed that – for the first time since June 2005 – support for the CDU/CSU was equal to that of all other parties that would clear the 5-percent hurdle required to win seats in the Bundestag lower house of parliament.