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Merkel Ready To Call New Vote Just Two Months After Election Victory

REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch

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Jacob Bojesson Foreign Correspondent
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German Chancellor Angela Merkel hinted at a snap election this spring Monday after she failed to form a majority government.

Merkel’s “Jamaica coalition” fell after the Free Democrats (FDP) pulled out of negotiations Sunday. The chancellor is now left with the options of forming a minority government with the Green party or putting her 12-year reign in the hands of the voters.

“I’m very skeptical,” Merkel said of the possibility of running a minority government. “My point of view is that new elections would be the better path.”

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier said he wants to avoid a snap election and he instead urged the involved parties to figure out a compromise.

“I expect the parties to make the formation of a new government possible in the foreseeable future,” Steinmeier said in a televised statement.

DeutschlandTrend poll released Monday shows 63 percent of Germans are in favor for a new election. Just 23 percent backed a Merkel-led minority government.

The coalition fell due to disagreements on issues regarding immigration and the environment. FDP defended its decision to pull out of talks Monday after politicians blamed them for the chaos. FDP leader Christian Lindner said the involved parties failed to establish a “basis of trust.”

“We would be forced to give up our principles and everything we have been working for for years,” Linder said. “We will not abandon our voters by supporting policies that we are not really convinced of. It is better not to rule than to rule wrongly.”

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