Merkel allies win big in Bavaria: exit polls
BERLIN (AFP) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel's Bavarian allies scored a resounding win in a state vote Sunday, exit polls showed, giving her a strong boost one week ahead of a general election.
The conservative ruling Christian Social Union, the Bavarian sister party of Ms Merkel's Christian Democrats, captured an absolute majority of seats in the regional parliament with 49-per cent of the vote, according to exit polls on public television.
Its outsized victory means it can drop its junior partners, the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP), who crashed out of the regional parliament with a disastrous three percent.
Ms Merkel campaigned heavily in the state's world-famous beer tents, pointing out that a big win in Bavaria would lend momentum to her bid for a third term at the helm of Europe's top economic power.