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The conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party won elections in the German capital of Berlin over the weekend, in a rerun poll that marked a major defeat for the center-left party of Chancellor Olaf Scholz that had governed the city since 1999, the Financial Times reported.
Results showed the CDU secured more than 28 percent of the vote, while the previously ruling Social Democratic Party (SPD) won 18.4 percent – its worst performance since World War II.
Meanwhile, the Greens also received 18.4 percent and the far-left Die Linke won slightly more than than 12 percent.
Sunday’s rerun came months after Berlin’s top court nullified the results of the 2021 poll, saying those elections were so chaotic they had to be redone.
The 2021 elections – which took place along with federal elections – saw Berliners line up for hours at polling stations, which ran out of ballots and ballot boxes.
It was the first time in the country’s postwar history that regional elections had to be repeated.
The SPD’s loss marks a notable shift to the right in Berlin, a city that traditionally votes left.
Residents and officials lamented to the New York Times that the capital has been facing a variety of issues over the years, including a major housing crisis, understaffed schools, and very slow city services.
The CDU campaigned on the message that Berlin was a dysfunctional city that needed a radical change of course.
Questions remain, however, whether the CDU will be able to form a governing coalition, as many of the other big parties have no interest in teaming up with the conservative party.