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Germans reward Merkel for steady hand

She led Germany through the darkest days of the euro zone crisis - and voters thanked her for it at the ballot box. In the first national election since the crisis erupted, Angela Merkel's conservatives gained an estimated 42% of the vote. Her popularity at home clear, she's well on the way to a third term. And if confirmed, the conservative bloc can applaud their strongest score in over 20 years. SOUNDBITE: German Chancellor Angela Merkel, saying (German): "We'll do all we can over the next four years to make them successful for Germany. We have to wait for the election results, it's too early to say how to proceed. We'll discuss it all when we have the final results, but today we should celebrate." What's still unclear until all the votes have been counted - who Merkel will work with. The conservatives even have the outside chance of securing an absolute majority on their own. That's highly unusual in German politics - it hasn't happene

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