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Top candidate of the Free Liberals, FDP, Stefan Birkner is seen in a TV studio at the Landtag regional parliament in Hanover on January 20, 2013 on polling day of the local elections in the central German state of Lower Saxony. The vote is largely seen as a test run for Chancellor Angela Merkel, her rivals and would-be heirs, eight months before nationwide polls. German Chancellor Angela Merkel's party was ahead after the first state poll in a general election year, exit polls indicated, but it was unclear whether its coalition would cling to power. AFP PHOTO / POOL / JOERG SARBACH (Photo credit should read JOERG SARBACH/AFP/Getty Images)
20 Jan 2013
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