Negative campaigns and unflattering posters of the opposition are nothing new in politics, but in Germany, the war between German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) party and the Social Democrats (SPD) is getting increasingly dirty.
With six weeks to go until the election, Merkel’s main rival is Peer Steinbrück, head of the SPD.
But he has come under fire for making out that Merkel lacked the necessary passion for Europe, because she was from the former East Germany.
And he has called into question her leadership over the EU’s crippling debt crisis, claiming she has failed to provide a vision for the bloc.
Merkel’s supporters have slammed the comments, saying it is the chancellor who has held the EU together. For her part, Merkel has begun talking about the cakes she bakes for her husband, in a bid to project a more intimate and wholesome image.
With only 23% of the vote in the latest polls, it’s a poor showing for Steinbrück’s SPD. But a coalition with the Greens on around 14% could mount a real challenge to Merkel’s CDU, which has a rating of about 40%.