Merkel party in crushing defeat

GERMAN chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats suffered a crushing defeat in a regional election in the city-state of Hamburg yesterday.

The rout, the party’s worst post-war result, will cost the CDU three seats in the upper house, or Bundesrat, and will make it harder for her coalition to pass laws.

The unexpectedly large scope of the defeat may cause turbulence for her party at the national level with six further regional elections looming.

The CDU fell to 20.8 per cent from 42.6 per cent in the last election in 2008, according to German television.