The Pirate Party, founded in 2006, look set to enter Berlin’s state parliament after exit polls suggest they attracted 8.5% of the vote. This means they would oust the Free Democrats, Angela Merkel’s junior partner in the unpopular national government.
The Pirate Party expanded its original platform focusing on filesharing, censorship and data protection to also include social issues and citizens’ rights and this appears to have captured the imagination of younger voters.
The result is not the first European success for the Pirates. The original Swedish version of the party won a seat in the European parliament in 2009 after capturing just over 7% of the vote.