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Slovenian President Wins First Round, Runoff in 3 Weeks

Incumbent President Borut Pahor casts his ballot at a polling station during presidential elections in Sempeter pri Novi Gorici, Slovenia, Oct. 22, 2017.

Slovenia's incumbent president Borut Pahor won the most votes in Sunday's election, but not enough to avoid a runoff.

With nearly all the ballots counted, Pahor is expected to finish with 47 percent, while his main challenger, former comedian Marjan Sarec, will win about 25 percent.

Pahor said he expects to win the November 12 runoff as he thanked voters for backing him in Sunday's first round.

Slovenia is a former Yugoslav republic which has frequently been in the news in the past year as the birthplace of U.S. first lady Melania Trump.

The Slovenian presidency is a largely ceremonial office. But the president nominates the prime minister, and presidential opinions greatly influence government policies.