Social Democrats win German election, beating Merkel’s conservatives

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Germany’s Social Democratic Party (SPD) won a narrow victory in Sunday’s general election, topping the outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) in the race to replace her after she stepped down following 16 years in power. It was the worst ever showing for the CDU. However, the slim margin of 1.6 percentage points separating the top two parties means that both could potentially form a ruling coalition and it could take weeks or months of horse trading before a new government takes shape. Exit polls projected a nail-biter between the CDU and SPD, confirmed by official results released after 4 a.m. in Germany showing the SPD winning by 1.6 percentage points, 25.7 percent against 24.6 percent of the vote, according to the New York Times. The chancellor candidates for both parties projected confidence speaking to their supporters soon after polls closed in the evening. “People checked the box for the S.P.D. because they want there to be a
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