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Last updated: February 20. 2013 3:00AM - 100 Views

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(AP) A defeat for Chancellor Angela Merkel's coalition in a high-profile state election is a blow to the German leader as she seeks a third term later this year but it's far from clear whether the opposition will be strong enough to oust the popular conservative.


The opposition Social Democrats and Greens narrowly ejected Merkel's center-right alliance from the government of Lower Saxony state in an election Sunday, winning a single-seat majority in its legislature.


National parliamentary elections are due in September. Sunday's vote saw a state governor from Merkel's Christian Democrats lose his job despite his personal popularity and surveys show Merkel herself is considerably more popular than her coalition with the pro-market Free Democrats.


Opposition leader Sigmar Gabriel said Monday the outcome of September's election is open.


Associated Press
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