Merkel's coalition loses state vote
on 21/01/2013 07:37:29
The opposition coalition of Social Democrats and Greens won a single-seat majority in the state legislature in Lower Saxony, a region of eight million people in north-western Germany, last night.
The state has been run for a decade by a coalition of Ms Merkel's conservative Christian Democratic Union and the pro-market Free Democrats, the same parties that form the national government.
Ms Merkel, 58, will seek another four-year term in a national parliamentary election expected in September.
She and her party are riding high in national polls, but the opposition hopes the Lower Saxony vote shows that she is vulnerable.