Berlin, Germany. Today’s election is a sign of what Angela Merkel faces in the fall 2017 national elections. As pressure mounts on the German leader from a migrant invasion, and now potentially sending troops to Afghanistan, one can only wonder how much more voters will stand for, before her voter base is affected.

Germany’s most populous state are going to the polls in an election seen as a crucial test for Chancellor Angela Merkel. But numerous issues may start to erode her front runner status in national elections comming up this fall.

Polls show Mrs Merkel’s centre-right Christian Democrats (CDU) could unseat the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) in North Rhine-Westphalia. The SPD has run the state for most of the post WWII period.

A CDU victory would be a boost for Mrs Merkel as she seeks a fourth term in national elections in September.SPD leader Martin Schulz has predicted that if they win in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) he will become Germany’s next chancellor.

The SPD are currently junior partners in Germany’s governing coalition.
But German political specialists in Berlin say the party has been slipping in opinion polls and Mr Schulz may live to regret his forecast.

Merkel has won a previous bellweather vote in Saarland and polls ahead of Sunday’s vote put the two parties neck-and-neck.

The CDU’s campaign has targeted voters’ frustration on issues such as traffic congestion, rising crime and education. Merkel trys to cater more to diverse issues of interest to German voters, in an effort to improve her chances for re-election in 2017.

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