Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

Sweden almost has a new PM

by fjallstrom Fri Nov 26th, 2021 at 08:33:29 AM EST

Swedish PM Löfven resigned earlier this fall, paving the way for the Social Democrats to enter next years election with a newly appointed PM.

Those with good memories remember that this summer Löfven was voted out and then returned as PM.

His successor, current finance minister Magdalena Andersson was today voted in and then resigned a few hours later. She will be back though.

Frontpaged - Bernard

Those with excellent memories remember that the last Swedish election ended inconclusively with seats divided thusly:

For practical purposes the parliament can be divided in far right (Sweden Democrats, 62 seats), conservative parties (The Moderates, 70 seats, and the Christian Democrats 22 seats), the liberal parties (the Liberals, 20 seats, and the Centre, 31 seats) the cabinet parties (the Greens, 16 seats, and the Social Democrats, 100 seats) and finally the left (Left party, 28 seats).

The standard cabinet formations has been either conservatives plus liberals, also known as "The Alliance" (143 seats) or the Social Democrats with support from Greens and Left, aka "The Red-Greens" (144 seats).

Eventually in January of 2019 a Swedish cabinet was formed with the red-green cabinet, active support from the liberal parties and acceptance from the Left. Since then the Liberal party has shifted rightwards, and this summer the coalition was down to Green-Soc.Dem cabinet with acceptance from Center and Left.

And then came yesterday.

Yesterday the Center party (farmer/neoliberal) abstained in the vote for PM, meaning Magdalena Andersson got elected as PM for a soc.dem-green government. To get elected as PM, the speakers proposal needs to not be opposed by a majority of the parliament.

But then the Center party also abstained in the budget vote meaning the far right-conservative budget proposal passed over the cabinet's budget (that the Center party had earlier been part of negotiating). The budget proposal with most votes passes, so abstaining here had a different effect.

Then the Green party declared they would no longer be part of the government as all they got into the cabinet's budget got lost, so the Greens are no longer part of the coalition.

Then although the Greens still support Andersson as PM, she resigned as it is practise for the PM to resign if a coalition party resigns from government.

The soc-dems are still interested in forming a government even with a far right-conservative budget this year. Andersson both stepped down and declared interest in forming a one party government at the same time. The Greens will likely abstain or vote for Andersson so unless the Center party or the Left votes against Andersson she will soon form a one party minority government.

And its elections in September 2022. What has been showed here is that there are two real government options forming, the left bloc (Green,soc-dem and Left) and the far-right-conservative bloc (Sweden Democrats, Moderates, and Christian Democrats), with the two liberal parties split. The Liberal party leaning towards the far-right-conservative bloc (voted against Andersson and abstained in the budget vote, in effect providing acceptance towards the far right-conservative coalition) and the Center party... well after Wednesday, who knows what they want?

The longer story over is that since the last election, the conservative parties has joined and accepted the far right, over their former allies in the liberal parties.

The Liberal party seems to have half-way accepted this new order and wants and Alliance government (conservatives and liberals) with support from the far right. The Center party was until Wednesday so oppsed to collaborating wiht the far right that they were looking like moving towards the centre-left with Greens and Soc-dems. Now, who knows?

by fjallstrom on Fri Nov 26th, 2021 at 01:50:54 PM EST
Imagine trying to run a multi-party system like that in the US, where we can't even figure out who wins in our two-party system when one candidate gets 10% more votes than the other!
by asdf on Fri Nov 26th, 2021 at 04:31:53 PM EST
On a broad level what accounts for the move rightward of the Moderate and Christian Democrat parties?

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Nov 26th, 2021 at 05:45:34 PM EST
Power politics. Reinfeldt's bet in 2014 that the far right could be harnessed in a powerless position backfired when the Sweden democrats declared that they would vote for the opposing budget unless given influence on it, and the Sweden democrats then continued gaining voters on the right. To stem the flow the conservatives have accepted the far right and largely incorporated their rhetoric on immigration, and from there it is a small step to cooperation.

The liberal parties on the other hand has voters who are liberal on migration and anathema to the far right. The Liberals are now consistently polling around 3%, below the 4% limit to stay in parliament. Joining the right might be a desperate move to hope for support voters from the Moderates who switch to keep them in parliament to avoid the 3% being wasted. On the other hand right wing voters might prefer to see them gone.

The Center is polling well around 10%, much thanks to their position as right wing against the far right, but has real issues with dealing with the Left party.

The Conservatives might be counting on neutralizing the liberals by getting the Liberal party out or on their side, and the Center as passive support. There's a clear campaign from them to get rid of the Greens that are polling around 4%.

With the Christian democrats also polling around 4%, the election will probably turn on which of the smaller parties get 4,02% and which gets 3,98%. The 4% line is the closest we get to your swing states.

by fjallstrom on Fri Nov 26th, 2021 at 06:48:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I have a habit of being confused by everyone's inability to learn from the Weimar example, when the corporate interests' plan in the early 30s to keep the Nazis on a leash utterly failed.  Then I remember the First Rule: People are stupid.
by rifek on Mon Nov 29th, 2021 at 04:16:31 AM EST
[ Parent ]
One of the arguments against democracy is that the common people are stupid, so it is up to the elite to control things in a non-stupid way. Problem is, the elites are also stupid.
by asdf on Mon Nov 29th, 2021 at 04:08:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Stupid elites add value.
by Cat on Mon Nov 29th, 2021 at 04:19:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Elites are controlled by fear and greed. When they are fearful of loss of power, influence and status they can make self defeating short term moves just as much as greed can lead them to long term disaster when it dominates.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Nov 29th, 2021 at 06:14:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui (Oui) on Mon Nov 29th, 2021 at 08:24:52 PM EST

Go to: [ European Tribune Homepage : Top of page : Top of comments ]