According to initial predictions, the three parties that make up the federal government in Germany experienced major decreases in two state elections that are seen as indicators of the country’s overall sentiment. At the same time, smaller parties, including the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD), saw an increase in support.
Early projections show that conservative parties were successful in the states of Bavaria and Hesse, with the Christian Social Union (CSU) winning 37 percent of the vote in Bavaria and the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) winning 35.5 percent in Hesse. These results reflect a decrease for the CSU compared to the last state election in Bavaria, but a notable increase for the CDU in Hesse.
If the exit surveys are correct, the outcome will indicate a strong discontent with the current governing coalition in Germany led by Chancellor Olaf Scholz. The coalition includes the Social Democrats (SPD), Greens, and Free Democrats (FDP) and is facing increasing concerns over economic and social stability.
The latest projections show the SPD and AfD tied for second place at 16 percent in Hesse. In Bavaria, the Greens are projected to come in second with 16 percent of the vote, narrowly beating out the AfD.
The FDP is facing negative election results, with projected support of only 3 percent in Bavaria. This would prevent them from reaching the 5 percent threshold required to enter the state parliament. This would also be the fourth state where the FDP has failed to gain parliamentary representation since joining the federal ruling coalition. In Hesse, the FDP is projected to receive 5 percent of the vote.
The newly-formed conservative Free Voters party in Bavaria is expected to secure 14 percent of the vote, showing an increase from the previous state election in 2018.