Berlin German Chancellor Angela Merkel won a second term on Sunday, along with the center-right majority that eluded her four years ago — nudging Europe’s biggest economic power to the right as it claws its way out of a deep recession.
Voters sent the nation’s main left-wing party, the Social Democrats of Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, into opposition after 11 years in government. It was the party’s worst parliamentary election result since World War II.
The conservative Merkel ended her four-year “grand coalition” with Steinmeier’s party thanks to a record showing by her new coalition partner, the pro-business Free Democrats. Her own Christian Democratic Union performed unimpressively.
Merkel’s CDU and its Bavaria-only sister, the Christian Social Union, won 33.8 percent of the vote and the Social Democrats took 23 percent. The Free Democrats captured 14.6 percent, the Left Party 11.9 percent and the Greens 10.7 percent.