Denmark coalition crisis?

On the rare occasion that a government is headed by the third largest party in parliament, and is backed by the second largest, which happens to be a “far-right” or “populist” party, one might expect the governance to be challenging. So it goes in Denmark.

This week, eight months into the single-party minority government of Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen, one of the government’s parliamentary support parties has threatened to pull its support. But it is not the right-wing Danish People’s Party that is causing the problem, it is the smaller governing partner, the Conservatives, who have just 6 seats in the 179-seat parliament.

According to The Local, the Conservatives have “lost confidence in Environment and Food Minister Eva Kjer Hansen.”

Kjer Hansen’s critics specifically accuse her of giving into the farm lobby on norms governing the use of fertilisers, leaving water supplies exposed to increased pollution from agricultural runoff.

Thus far, Rasmussen is backing the minister, and has called for talks with his partner.

[the above was edited on 28 February in response to a clarification in the comments]


2 thoughts on “Denmark coalition crisis?

  1. The term “coalition partner” in the post is a bit misleading: What we have is a single-party minority government which do not have formal agreements with the other three “Bourgeois” (that’s the Danish term) parties. So, the Conservatives are part of the Liberal government’s parliamentary basis but not a formal partner, beyond specific agreements. (And yes, Danish politics is wonderfully complicated)

    The minister in question resigned “voluntarily” earlier today so the issue didn’t go to a vote in the Folketing

    • Thanks, Jacob. I actually thought it was a single-party government, but the news item seemed to imply they might be a formal (governing) partner. I will edit the entry for clarity.

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