Germany will hold a few state elections this year with three states voting on March 13th. The results promise to be interesting to say the least, so lets have some discussion on these. Just a short definitely non-conclusive overview over parties involved: CDU - conservative party, currently heading the federal government, are heading the government in Sachsen-Anhalt which they form together with the SPD SPD - social democrats, also currently part of the federal government, are heading the government in Rheinland-Pfalz which the form together with the Green Party Grüne - they are currently heading a Green/SPD government in Baden Württemberg which is the first such government since the greens started. FDP - "free democrats", mostly neo liberal party, was part of federal and state governments since the federal republic was founded and fell off the radar mostly by losing all seats in the federal parliament during the last elections, now trying to come back to something resembling relevance. Linke - "the left", fusion of the successors of the socialist party that ran the GDR and a relatively large splinter of the SPD that left the SPD during and after Chancellor Schröder's time in office. They do have a major power base in the eastern German states. AfD - "alternative for Germany", a right wing new party that initially formed in reaction to the financial and fiscal crisis in the EU and became strong during the height of the discussion about financial aid to Greece but now is running mostly on being xenophobic and opposition to the refugee policies. Now how are polls doing? Baden-Württemberg Grüne 32% CDU 28% SPD 13% AfD 13% FDP 8% Linke 4% Rheinland-Pfalz CDU 36% SPD 34% AfD 9% Grüne 7% FDP 5% Linke 4% Sachsen-Anhalt CDU 31% Linke 21% AfD 19% SPD 16% Grüne 5.5% FDP 4.5% in all states need 5% to win any seats. Now if this holds both SPD and CDU will have serious internal troubles I suspect. In Baden-Württemberg the CDU has been the major party for ever but has been declining for a while - dropping to second place is a major blow right there. The SPD is continuing a declining trend but with 4th place finishes possible in two states they will have some serious internal struggle going forward I guess. Greens of course would and should feel encouraged, especially given most everyone thought their success 5 years ago in Baden-Württemberg was a Fukushima fluke. That a xenophobic party will win seats in all three parliaments will of course have repercussions as well, I just am not quite sure which ones.