German election: Merkel’s CDU continue commanding lead in polls

With less than two weeks to go until Germany’s election, it looks like Germans will be backing the status-quo.

Recent polling shows that Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU are retaining their double-digit lead over their centre-left SPD rivals.

The most recent Forschungsgruppe Wahlen poll, released on the 8th September, puts the country's current senior coalition partners on 38% of the vote. It also puts Martin Schulz’s SPD on just 22%, the Left on 9%, the Greens on 8%, the far-right AfD on 9%, and the liberal FDP on 9%.

Recent polls point to similar results, with all six parties set to meet the 5% threshold to enter the Bundestag.

Unless something massive in the next week and a bit, Angela Merkel will emerge as chancellor after the vote on the 24th September.

In the previous election, the CDU/CSU formed a grand coalition with the SPD. The CDU/CSU won 41.5% so it looks likely that their share of the vote will dip into the mid-to-high-thirties, if polling is accurate.

The question on everyone’s lips is: who will Merkel look to for a governing partner?

Between 2013 and 2017 there were just four parties in the Bundestag, which made a grand coalition a near-necessity, but with Merkel’s natural allies, the FDP, looking set to re-enter the chamber, a CDU/CSU-FPD coalition could be on the cards. But will that be enough?

The Pollytix seat calculator suggests that such a coalition could fall short of a majority, meaning the two parties could have to reach out to the Greens to secure a deal, in what has been dubbed a traffic light coalition.

A three-party deal could be precarious so another grand coalition could a possibility.

Ladbrokes' odds suggest that a repeat of the current set-up is the least unlikely option, offering odds of 5/4 for a renewed grand deal. A CDU/CSU-FDP deal is the next favourite, with the company offering odds of 9/4 while a traffic light coalition is given odds of 7/2.

(All odds are accurate as of 11th September and can be accessed here).

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