AfD Comes Third In Municipal Elections A Week Before Three State-Wide Votes

RAGUHN, GERMANY - MARCH 06: Supporters of the Alternative fuer Deutschland political party (AfD), including AfD head in Thuringia Bjoern Hoecke (C-L, wearing black), march with a banner that reads: 'Stop Merkel! Secure borders, drop the CDU!' in reference to German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the German Christian Democrats (CDU), …
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BERLIN (AP) — A nationalist party that is challenging the German government’s welcoming stance toward migrants has come third in municipal elections a week before three state-wide votes.

Preliminary results released early Monday by officials in the central state of Hesse show the Alternative for Germany (AfD) receiving 13.2 percent of the votes in Sunday’s election.

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Union received 28.2 percent and the center-left Social Democrats got 28 percent. The Green Party received 11.6 percent of the vote.

Final results are expected Thursday.

The AfD received 10.3 percent of the vote in the state’s biggest city Frankfurt. The party, which was founded in 2013, has campaigned against migration and is also expected to get a lot of votes in state elections in Baden-Wuerttemberg, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saxony-Anhalt next Sunday.