Five years ago, the AfD raised the mood in the refugee crisis, which helped it achieve results of over 20 percent in the East.

According to surveys, it is almost as strong today as it was then.

In Saxony-Anhalt, there will be state elections in just over a week.

One in four could vote for the AfD there.

Why is that?

Timo Steppat

Editor in politics.

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    The Federal Government's Eastern Commissioner, Marco Wanderwitz (CDU), sees a stronger tendency to vote for right-wing extremist parties in East Germany than in the West.

    "We are dealing with people who are partially socialized by dictatorship in a way that they have not reached democracy even after thirty years," said Wanderwitz the FAZ podcast for Germany.

    Only a small part of the AfD voters is “potentially retrievable”, so one can only hope “for the next generation”.

    The guests in the FAZ podcast:

    Marco Wanderwitz

    (CDU), Federal Government Commissioner for Eastern Europe on the strength of the AfD and how the CDU should act

    Everhard Holtmann

    , Professor of Sociology at the University of Halle (Saale) on the reasons for AfD voters and the feeling of being left behind

    Reinhard Bingener

    , FAZ state correspondent, on the work of the state government in Saxony-Anhalt and the election campaign.

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