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Germany goes to the polls - a look at the party leaders

Angela Merkel is the favorite to occupy the chancellor's seat for the next four years as polls show her CDU party ahead. But here's a look at other party heads who are hoping to improve the standing of their parties.

Chancellor Angela Merkel has led Germany for the past 12 years and looks set to lead the country for another four years, as her Christian Democratic Party has a commanding lead in opinion polls. Her nearest competitor is Martin Schulz of the Social Democratic Party, but he is about 12 points behind according to the polls.