Oct 15, 5:23 PM EDT

The center-left Social Democrats were projected to win a state election Sunday in Germany's Lower Saxony, ending a losing streak in three other states and at the national level this year



Latest News
A well-known German neo-Nazi has been convicted again of Holocaust denial and sentenced to six months prison

Chancellor Angela Merkel says she expects exploratory talks on a new German coalition, the first step toward forming a government for Europe's biggest economy, to take several weeks

Germany's Interior Ministry says it has told the country's refugee authority to look into a report that employees may have denounced Turkish asylum-seekers to media in their homeland

The center-left Social Democrats were projected to win a state election Sunday in Germany's Lower Saxony, ending a losing streak in three other states and at the national level this year

The center-left Social Democrats are projected to win a vote in Germany's northern state of Lower Saxony

Multimedia
Exhibit Honors Soviet Photographer
Interactive
Berlin Wall: 20 Years Later

BERLIN (AP) -- The center-left Social Democrats were projected to win a state election Sunday in Germany's Lower Saxony, ending a losing streak in three other states and at the national level this year.

Projections by public broadcaster ARD based on initial results put the Social Democrats of Lower Saxony governor Stephan Weil ahead with 37 percent of the vote, a gain of 4.4 percentage points compared to 2013.

The current governing coalition comprising the Social Democrats and the Greens was uncertain of obtaining a parliamentary majority, though. The projections had the environmentalist Greens party receiving 8.7 percent of the vote, a decline of 5 percentage points from four years ago.

Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats, projected to receive 33.6 percent of the vote, failed to make gains. Analysts attributed the result - one of the worst for the party in Lower Saxony for decades to its top candidate's low profile and conservative voters' weariness with Merkel.

The ARD forecasts showed the free market FDP party with 7.5 percent of the vote and the nationalist Alternative for Germany with 6.2 percent. The nationalists have been plagued by infighting in recent months.

Final results weren't expected until later Sunday night or even Monday, due to the state's arcane election rules.

The campaign in Lower Saxony - one of Germany's biggest states and home to auto giant Volkswagen- has held up coalition talks at the national level.

Merkel's center-right party came out top in last month's federal election and plans to start holding talks Wednesday with the FDP and Greens about forming a coalition in Berlin. Known as a 'Jamaica coalition' because the parties' colors match those of the Caribbean nation's flag, such a government hasn't been tried before at the national level.

© 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.