German Chancellor accuses state govt of running up debt before vote

More than 13 million voters would go to the polls on Sunday in Germany’s biggest state in an election expected to help set the stage for the national ballot in September.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel gives a press conference in Berlin, on May 8, 2017

Merkel said in front of supporters in Aachen on Saturday, that new debt in Germany’s most populous state was higher than in all other German states combined.

“Something’s wrong here,’’ she said, noting that in spite of the fresh debt, the number of children per classroom was higher in North Rhine Westphalia than in any other state in the nation.

Opinion polls have pointed to a very close race between Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) and their centre-left Social Democrat (SPD) rivals in the state with 18 million residents.

The SPD currently governs the state in a coalition with the Green Party.

“The CDU is offering something different than the red-green state government,’’ she said, calling on the approximately 1,200 guests to vote on Sunday.

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