Germany's Social Democrats head for a pasting in Bremen vote

The Social Democrats, Germany's main center-left party, appears headed for its worst-ever result in a state election in Bremen, which it has run for 73 years, as well as a dire showing in the European Parliament election.

Exit polls for ARD and ZDF television put support for the Social Democrats at 24.5% and the center-right Christian Democratic Union, Chancellor Angela Merkel's party, up to 26.5%. The Social Democrats could finish second in the northwestern city-state, Germany's smallest, for the first time.

The polls put support for the Greens in Bremen up to 18.5%. That party is currently the Social Democrats' junior coalition partner in Bremen, and could decide whether or not it keeps its hold on the state government.

The exit polls put the far-right Alternative for Germany up at 7% support.