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Voting: Tense Count In Sweden

  • September 22nd, 2010
  • Posted by EUEditor

swedish-party-badges.jpgThe centre-right Swedish government has edged towards holding office with a small majority after weekend elections (19.9.10), with late, slow counting giving it an outside chance.

The emergence of an anti-immigration party, the Swedish Democrats, with 20 seats will complicate efforts to form a government.

The ruling Alliance group led by the Moderate Party Prime Minister,  Fredrik Reinfeldt, had 176 votes in the last parliament, now down to 172, out of a total 349 for the Riksdag –  but is still hoping to scrape up the extra in knife-edge counting for the final seats.

The left of centre opposition  parties, headed by the Social Democrats, have 157 so far, down from 171.

The major formations slugged it out over tax cuts (supported by the right wing) and welfare cuts (opposed by the opposition); but lost ground  over the burgeoning issue of immigration.

swedish-skins.jpgFor decades the preserve of skinhead politics, the anti-immigrant push, as in other parts of Europe, has accumulated a large fringe of voter support built on accumulating resentment — entering parliament for the first time.

swedish-parliament.gifSweden has a partly-proportional system, with 300 constituency seats, the other 49 determined on overall party gains, and requiring a detailed count.

The major parties have declared they will not deal with the Swedish Democrats; there is speculation that Mr Reinfeldt, if denied a majority, might try the unlikely option of seeking an agreement with the Greens.

Ongoing deadlock would require fresh elections.

Reference

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Sveriges Riksdag
, (home), Stockholm, “Members and Parties”, http://www.riksdagen.se/templates/R_Page____770.aspx, (22.9.10).

Niklas Pollard and Mia Shanley, Reuters, Stockholm, “Centre-right wins Swedish vote but short of majority”, 19.9.10. http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20100919/ts_nm/us_sweden_election, (22.9.10).

Erik Durhan, “Swedish Vote Count Nears Completion”, Wall Street Journal, NY, 22.9.10.
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703860104575507391550887632.html, (22.9.10).


Pictures
  -  Sveriges Riksdag, hammerskins.net

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