After more than four weeks of intense pre-coalition talks in Germany, the Free Democrats (FDP) pulled the plug on a very broad four-party alliance on Sunday. There are now two main options on how to proceed. Incumbent Chancellor Angela Merkel could form a minority government with her Christian Democrats (CDU) and the Bavarian sister-party, the Christian Social Union (CSU). Or the German voters will have to be asked to cast their ballots once more in a new election early next year.
A third, very unlikely, scenario would entail reinstating the so-called grand coalition between CDU/CSU and the Social Democrats (SPD). However, the SPD’s party leader Martin Schulz has ruled out reviving the two-party coalition that is formally still in power. And, as our infographic shows, by far most Germans would opt for new elections, no matter what their political affiliation. The original general election was held on September 24, 2017.