German Chancellor and chairwoman of the German Christian Democrats, CDU, Angela Merkel, left, and the CDU top candidate of the Lower Saxony state elections, David McAllister, right, attend the party's weekly executive committee meeting in Berlin, Germany, Monday, Jan. 21, 2013. 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. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

Associated Press
German Chancellor and chairwoman of the German Christian Democrats, CDU, Angela Merkel, left, and the CDU top candidate of the Lower Saxony state elections, David McAllister, right, attend the party's weekly executive committee meeting in Berlin, Germany, Monday, Jan. 21, 2013.  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.  (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)
German Chancellor and chairwoman of the German Christian Democrats, CDU, Angela Merkel, left, and the CDU top candidate of the Lower Saxony state elections, David McAllister, right, attend the party's weekly executive committee meeting in Berlin, Germany, Monday, Jan. 21, 2013. 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. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)