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German Television Station Gives National Election Results Two Days Before the Election

© REUTERS / MICHELE TANTUSSICandidates for the Federal elections Armin Laschet, CDU, Olaf Scholz, SPD and Annalena Baerbock, Greens pose with Linda Zervakis and Claudia von Brauchitsch for a photo, ahead of a TV talk show, in Berlin, Germany, September 19, 2021. REUTERS/Michele Tantussi
Candidates for the Federal elections Armin Laschet, CDU, Olaf Scholz, SPD and Annalena Baerbock, Greens pose with Linda Zervakis and Claudia von Brauchitsch for a photo, ahead of a TV talk show, in Berlin, Germany, September 19, 2021. REUTERS/Michele Tantussi - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.09.2021
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ARD, a German public television station, erroneously aired the results of the national election two days early.
The debacle occurred during the airing of the quiz show “Gefragt, gejagt”, which translates to “Asked, hunted,” when a banner popped up on the bottom of the screen.
According to the banner, the Union parties would get 22.1%, the Social Democratic Party 22.7%, the Alternative for Germany 10.5%, and the Free Democratic Party 13.2% of the vote in Germany’s national election.
ARD took down the banner before the results for the Left and the Greens were displayed. The incident occurred on Friday, with the election set for Sunday. ARD wasted little time soothing concerns of a predetermined election.
Holger Lichtenthäler, head of the ARD broadcasting, explained the prescient banner. “It was a technical test of the election crawl that was supposed to be done in the inactive broadcasting area in preparation for election Sunday, but went on air due to a switching error. It was an accident for which we apologize."
ARD has to hope that the election results don’t align too closely to their ‘early results’, or else questions will start to be asked. As the blooper was occurring, the contestants on the quiz show were asked, "Which goblin with red hair did Hans Clarin voice for decades?" The answer, of course, is Pumuckl, the mischievous kobold.
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