BERLIN (AP) -- The mayor of Bremen, Germany's smallest state, is stepping down after his center-left party lost significant support in an election.
The departure of Jens Boehrnsen, Bremen's mayor since 2005, is a blow to Germany's main center-left Social Democrats amid persistently poor national poll ratings.
The party has led Bremen since the 1940s. It won Sunday's state election with a disappointing 32.9 percent, down from 38.6 percent in 2011. Its coalition with the Greens, who also lost ground, emerged with only a slim majority in the state legislature.
Boehrnsen said Monday he will stand aside so his party "can set the political course for a better result" in four years' time. It wasn't clear who will replace him.
The Social Democrats are the junior partners in Chancellor Angela Merkel's national government.