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You're reading: Opposition expected to gain in Lithuanian ballot
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Exhausted after years of budget cuts, high unemployment, and declining living standards, Lithuanians were likely to opt for either the Social Democrats or Order and Justice, a populist party led by a former president impeached eight years ago, according to pre-election polls.

The government of Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius took over at the end of 2008 and was immediately forced to cut spending and raise taxes to fend off a crushing economic decline that followed years of robust growth.

Though Lithuania has avoided defaulting on its debts, its citizens have felt the financial pinch and seen their standard of living fall sharply. Tens of thousands of people have fled the country to seek jobs elsewhere in the European Union, leading to one of the sharpest demographic declines in all of Europe.

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