Earlier this year, Germany's Free Democrats picked Rainer Brüderle to lead this year's election campaign. But a bad fall and some misteps have handicapped his effort to pull the party out of its slump.
Chancellor Merkel faces a historic task in forging a "Jamaica coalition" of the conservatives, Free Democrats and Greens. The parties have a long way to go to bridge their differences, and have no option but to succeed.
Elections in Lower Saxony have complicated German Chancellor Angela Merkel's federal coalition calculus as her conservative party finished second in a close race with the Social Democrats.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel says her CDU will hold talks with the FDP and the Greens on forming a coalition government. The move was widely expected after the Social Democrats said they wanted to be in opposition.
Is Angela Merkel already under pressure less than a month after re-election? The German chancellor has fought back after her party's poor performance in Lower Saxony and the rise of a "new" conservatism in Austria.
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