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Originally published Tuesday, February 7, 2012 at 2:28 AM

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Merkel blurs border in stumping for Sarkozy

While France's President Nicolas Sarkozy hasn't yet announced whether he'll seek a second term, he already has a big-name campaign backer lined up - in Germany.

The Associated Press

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PARIS —

While France's President Nicolas Sarkozy hasn't yet announced whether he'll seek a second term, he already has a big-name campaign backer lined up - in Germany.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is openly stumping for Sarkozy, departing from longheld practice and blurring Europe's political borders. The two leaders are already trying to bridge the continent's economic divides to save the shared euro currency from catastrophe.

Merkel said Monday, "I support Nicolas Sarkozy on all fronts."

EU President Herman Van Rompuy says two years of debt crises have forced a "Europeanization of national political life."

Merkel's move may backfire. Sarkozy's main challenger for the presidency, Socialist Francois Hollande, says his priority is pleasing the French, something French voters are more likely to appreciate.

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