Sweden’s right-wing opposition party appears to have won a very thin election race. The big winners in the election are the far-right Sweden Democrats, who could be part of a government for the first time.
Sweden’s Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson formally handed in her resignation to the speaker of parliament on Thursday, after primary election results showed the right-wing opposition won a slim majority.
Andersen said a day earlier that the results were clear enough to draw conclusions and that it was important for Sweden to get a new government as soon as possible.
The leader of the nationalist Sweden Democrats, Jimi Akesson, declared victory for the four-party bloc on Wednesday and vowed to “put Sweden first”.
Ulf Kristerson of the conservative moderates, a likely candidate for prime minister, said the new government would “get Sweden in order.”
“I will now begin the work of forming a new government for all Swedes and all citizens,” Kristersson said.
The results are too close to call it a day
The results were very close before postal and overseas votes were included in the count. So far, the Moderates, Sweden Democrats, Christian Democrats and Liberals have a two-seat lead over the ruling Social Democrats.
By late Wednesday, 99.9% of votes in all 6,578 polling districts had been counted. If the results are confirmed, the right-wing opposition party will win 176 seats in the 349-seat parliament.
The ruling Social Democrats and their coalition are projected to win 173 seats in this instance.
Far right to be part of governing coalition
The Sweden Democrats, a party reliant on anti-immigration and nationalist rhetoric, have never been part of the government.
The party has so far won more than 20 percent of the vote, succeeding outgoing Prime Minister Magdalena Andersen’s Social Democrats, who have dominated Swedish politics since the 1930s.
The Sweden Democrats are poised to overtake the moderates, with 20.6% of the vote compared to the coalition’s 19.1%.
During the election campaign, Kristerson of the Moderates vowed to crack down on crime and “straighten” Sweden. He has called for a tougher immigration policy, criticizing him as shifting his platform towards the Sweden Democrats.
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