Two decades ago, Saxony was as beaten down as the rest of East Germany. In Dresden, its capital, fire- bombed Baroque palaces and museums had been partially rebuilt, but raw sewage still poured into the Elbe River. Telephones were rare. Young people longed to move West to escape shortages and censorship.
Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats face a Lower Saxony state vote highlighting challenges she’ll face in a re-election bid in September amid collapsing support for her Free Democratic Party ally.