Overtaking German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s other would-be coalition partner is the Green party, which is polling at its highest level this year.
As reported by the Reuters news agency, a coalition agreement would see Merkel extend her 12-year spell at Germany’s helm, during which she has helped avoid a collapse of the euro zone and cemented her country’s position as the bloc’s economic powerhouse.
Merkel must bring together the Greens, the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP) and her own conservative bloc to secure a majority, with sticking points including immigration caps, whether to end coal production and increasing defence spending.
According to the findings of a poll published by German daily Bild, the Greens are at 11%, up by one percentage point from a week earlier, while the FDP fell by the same amount to 10%.
While the findings of the poll will have no direct bearing on coalition talks, it gives the Greens some bragging rights in terms of their negotiating, reported Reuters.
“If Germany wants to meet its climate protection goals, an exit from coal is necessary,” Anton Hofreiter, one of the leaders of the Green’s parliamentary party told Reuters.