The Los Angeles Times reports: A populist far-right German party that has fiercely attacked the government for letting in more than a million refugees in the last year is expected to be the big winner in three important state elections Sunday that will serve as a referendum on Chancellor Angela Merkel’s controversial open-door policies.
The party has aimed its appeal to German voters with a shrill anti-foreigner bent that has some similarities to Donald Trump’s bid to win the Republican nomination for U.S. president.
The Alternative for Germany party, or AfD, has campaigned hard against refugees streaming into the country, mostly from Syria and Iraq, and it has surged in public opinion polls from about 3% last summer to as high as 20% ahead of elections in three of Germany’s 16 states. That is far above the 4.7% the AfD won in the 2013 federal election just half a year after it was formed mainly to oppose Europe’s single currency, the euro, and the expensive European Union financial bailouts to Greece. [Continue reading…]