In a stinging rebuke to their political leaders, voters in the eastern German state of Brandenburg rejected a plan Sunday that would have united them in a single state with Berlin.
Virtually the entire German political establishment had supported the plan. Only the former East German Communists opposed it, and they were Sunday’s biggest victors.
Voters in the city-state of Berlin approved it resoundingly, with 60 percent voting in favor and 38 percent against, according to preliminary results. But in surrounding Brandenburg, voters rejected the plan by 57 to 41 percent.