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BERLIN — Conservatives raced toward victory in some of Europe's largest economies Sunday as initial results and exit polls showed voters punishing left-leaning parties in European parliament elections in France, Germany and elsewhere.
Some right-leaning parties said the results vindicated their reluctance to spend more on company bailouts and fiscal stimulus amid the global economic crisis.
First projections by the European Union showed center-right parties would have the most seats — between 263 and 273 — in the 736-member parliament. Center-left parties were expected to get between 155 to 165 seats.