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Merkel has narrow center-right majority: exit poll






A combination of pictures shows Angela Merkel, German Chancellor and leader of the conservative Christian Democratic Union party (CDU) and Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier candidate for chancellor of the Social Democratic Party SPD as they vote in the general election in Berlin September 27, 2009. REUTERS/Staff
A combination of pictures shows Angela Merkel, German Chancellor and leader of the conservative Christian Democratic Union party (CDU) and Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier candidate for chancellor of the Social Democratic Party SPD as they vote in the general election in Berlin September 27, 2009. REUTERS/Staff
</head> <body> <p>BERLIN (Reuters) - Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives appear to have won just enough votes in a German election to form a center-right government with their preferred partners, the Free Democrats (FDP), exit polls showed on Sunday.</p> <p>An exit poll from ZDF television put support for Merkel's conservative bloc -- her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and the Bavarian Christian Social Union (CSU) -- at 33.5 percent and showed the FDP on 14.5 percent.</p> <p>Together, their total narrowly exceeded that of the other three main parties combined, putting Merkel on track for a second term and suggesting she will be able to end her awkward "grand coalition" with the rival Social Democrats (SPD).</p> <p>As head of a center-right government with the business-friendly FDP, Merkel would be expected to push for tax relief and extend the lifespan of German nuclear plants.</p> <p>The SPD stood at 23.5 percent, according to the exit poll, their lowest score in the post-war era.</p> <p>(Writing by Noah Barkin; editing by Mark Trevelyan)</p> </body> </html> </div><!-- end article-body --> </div><!-- end aticle-body-wrapper --> <aside> <ul class="social-share-btns clearfix"> <li><g:plusone size="medium" href="http://whbl.com/news/articles/2009/sep/27/merkel-has-narrow-center-right-majority-exit-poll/"></g:plusone></li> <li><div id="fb-root"></div><script src="http://connect.facebook.net/en_US/all.js#appId=112315878855956&xfbml=1"></script><fb:like href="http://whbl.com/news/articles/2009/sep/27/merkel-has-narrow-center-right-majority-exit-poll/" action="recommend" send="true" layout="button_count" width="150" show_faces="false" font=""></fb:like></li> <li><a href="http://twitter.com/share" class="twitter-share-button" data-url="http://whbl.com/news/articles/2009/sep/27/merkel-has-narrow-center-right-majority-exit-poll/" data-text="Merkel has narrow center-right majority: exit poll" data-count="horizontal">Tweet</a><script type="text/javascript" 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