In the race for the office of Schwerin mayor, SPD incumbent Rico Badenschier prevailed against Leif-Erik Holm from the AfD. Badenschier received 67.8 percent of the votes in Sunday’s runoff. According to the electoral authority, Holm got 32.2 percent. Badenschier has thus prevented the first right-wing populist AfD candidate from entering the town hall of a German state capital. According to preliminary results, turnout was 49.4 percent.

The result of the first ballot two weeks ago had caused a stir. The incumbent received 42 percent of the votes in the first ballot on June 4. Holm came second with 27.4 percent. The non-party candidate Thomas Tweer, supported by the CDU, FDP and independent citizens, came third with 17.1 percent.

The SPD state chairwoman of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, head of government Manuela Schwesig, commented that she was proud that the people of Schwerin had clearly rejected the AfD. The state capital remains in good hands. “Rico Badenschier has also increased significantly in absolute votes today – not only compared to the first ballot, but also to the election in 2016,” said Schwesig.

After the first round of voting, the Executive Vice President of the International Auschwitz Committee, Christoph Heubner, explained that the strengthening of the AfD in Germany, also in connection with the popularization of right-wing extremist hate worlds in Europe, was a particular challenge for survivors of the Holocaust. Most recently, the AfD had also recorded high poll numbers nationwide.

Heubner had advocated that the defeated CDU also recommended an election of the SPD man in the runoff. The CDU, like almost all the defeated parties, complied with this. Only the FDP district association did not make a corresponding election recommendation, which also caused a lack of understanding among the state and federal FDP. The Lord Mayor of Schwerin is elected for a seven-year term.

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