- Title: Chancellor thriller: German tabloid Bild goes to press on election night
- Date: 26th September 2021
- Summary: EMPLOYEE CHECKING PRINT QUALITY PILE OF NEWSPAPERS
- Embargoed: 10th October 2021 21:14
- Keywords: Annalena Baerbock Armin Laschet Germany election Olaf Scholz newspapers polls results
- Location: BERLIN, GERMANY
- City: BERLIN, GERMANY
- Country: Germany
- Topics: Europe,Government/Politics,Elections/Voting
- Reuters ID: LVA003EWCW75Z
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:As Germany prepares for potential months of political wrangling as parties try to form a coalition, tabloid Bild newspaper is hot off the press headlining with: 'chancellor thriller."
The front page shows smiling SPD Olaf Scholz and a glum looking CDU head Armin Laschet as well as outrage over various polling station glitches throughout the country.
At 1600GMT early projected polls put Germany's Social Democrats first by a narrow margin in Sunday's national election, putting them in pole position to lead a government for the first time since 2005 and to end 16 years of conservative-led rule under Angela Merkel.
The centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) were on track for 25.5% of the vote, ahead of 24.5% for Merkel's CDU/CSU conservative bloc, projections for broadcaster ARD showed, but both groups believed they could lead the next government.
The tight result, which saw the CDU/CSU slump to a post-war low for a federal election, means lengthy coalition talks will follow before a new government takes office, likely involving the Greens and the liberal Free Democrats (FDP).
Scholz, 63, would become the fourth post-war SPD chancellor after Willy Brandt, Helmut Schmidt and Gerhard Schroeder. Finance minister in Merkel's awkward ruling "grand coalition", he is a former mayor of Hamburg, where Merkel and Schmidt were both born.
Scholz's main rival, conservative chancellor candidate Armin Laschet, said the election was "a neck and neck" race and signalled the conservatives were not ready yet to concede.
Merkel plans to step down after the election, making the vote an era-changing event to set the future course of Europe's largest economy.
(production: Oliver Ellrodt, Zoltan Berta, Tanya Wood, Ulrike Heil)
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