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August 28, 2005

Regime Change For Germany? Schroeder Trails By 12 To 14 Points

Less than three weeks to go. Obviously, it would create a major change in German, and European, positioning vis a vis America.

German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said on Sunday he is counting on undecided voters to save him from defeat in an election that polls show he is likely lose.

In an interview he also pledged to fight to the last minute for re-election, adding the fact his Social Democrat Party (SPD) trailed in opinion polls only fired him on.

"We are fighting to become the largest party. Certainly the circumstances have been more favourable in the past, but that merely spurs me on," Schroeder told ZDF television.

"I am counting on the last 14 days, that is the decisive time when undecided voters make up their minds."

Three weeks before Germany's general election, Angela Merkel's conservatives (CDU/CSU) have a 12-to-14 point advantage, boosted by voters' appetite for change at the top after years of chronic unemployment and weak economic growth.

Next Sunday Schroeder faces Merkel in a head-to-head television debate, where he is expected to hold an advantage, as the more charismatic and experienced screen performer.

On the other hand, the CDU/CSU has apparently been running against East Germany (Germany's communist stronghold, of course) and is alienating East German voters.


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