Sweden’s General election ends with the anticipation of a change in the political landscape in Europe as support for far-right Sweden Democrats (SD) swells.
The nation’s center-right and center-left blocs fell short of majority. However, the anti-immigration SD’s share of votes rose from 12.0 percent in 2014 to 17.6 percent in Sunday’s polls.
Prime Minister Stefan Lofven’s left-leaning bloc managed to gain only a slight lead.
Lofven’s Social Democrats, the Greens and the Left Party bloc and even the opposition center-right Alliance garnered around 40 percent which is well short of the majority.
The governing party lost 13 seats in the parliament, the worst results in years.
At a party rally on Sunday night, Mr. Lofven refused to step down:
“We have two weeks left until parliament opens. I will work on calmly, as prime minister, respecting voters and the Swedish electoral system. The voters have made their choice, now it’s up to all of us decent parties to wait for the final result and then negotiate (and) cooperate to move Sweden forward in a responsible way.”
Although the Social Democrats party remains to be the largest party it cannot govern together in a coalition because it failed to snatched majority of the numbers.
In two weeks, Mr. Lofven will face a confidence vote in the parliament. In the event of a stand-down, the parliament will be dissolved and in September fresh coalitions will begin.
Sweden Democrats’ chief Jimmie Akesson said that the Social Democrats party should initiate a dialogue with him, otherwise he will support a no-confidence vote along with the main opposition alliance that will certainly send off the Prime Minister.
Media predicted a higher outcome for Jimmie Akesson’s party but the bottom line is, it still represents the largest improvement by any party at the Riksdag.
What does this mean? 63 parliamentary seats now belongs to Sweden Democrats, up from 49 seats in 2014.
Party chief Jimmie Akesson told members: “We will gain huge influence over what happens in Sweden during the coming weeks, months and years.”