CDU ble degradert til tredjestørste parti i delstaten Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, etter Sosialdemokratene og Alternative für Deutschland. Men også SPD gikk sterkt tilbake. Dermed ble AfD valgvinner.

For the chancellor, the result will be seen as a damaging defeat in a state her party once dominated, and where the parliamentary constituency she has represented for the last 25 years lies.

The election was technically won by her coalition partners, the Social Democrats (SPD), who came first with around 30 per cent of the vote. But the SPD also suffered heavy losses in the state, and it is the AfD that will be seen as the real winner.

Resultatet var en skikkelig nesestyver for Merkel.

Foreløpig er det intet som tyder på at hun legger om kursen. AfD henger hun ut som et parti uten løsninger, som kun pisker opp hat.

“The more people who go to vote, the less votes will be won by parties who, in my view, offer no solutions to our problems and are built mainly around protest — often with hate,” she told the NDR broadcaster in an interview.

But her pleas appear to have fallen on deaf ears as people flocked to vote for the AfD in an elections which saw a high turnout of 61 per cent — almost ten per cent more than at the previous state elections in 2011.

It was clear that Mrs Merkel’s party suffered at the hands of voters unhappy with her refugee policy.

Merkel synes ute av stand til å ta inn over seg at hennes politikk er grunnleggende upopulær. Hun mener det skyldes uredelig retorikk.

Det kan bli lenge til oppvåkning.