Sweden, 2018

Sweden’s general election was today, and it seems it will be a close result. The anti-immigration Sweden Democrats were polling in second place, but the polls aggregated at the Wikipedia page on the election suggest their support was falling sharply in the last phase before the election.

I do not know Swedish politics well enough to tease out the likely coalition or support arrangements that might result. But I open this thread as a place for those who are following the results.

Besides, we learned in 2014 that Swedish inter-party bargaining can be a little unpredictable.

9 thoughts on “Sweden, 2018

  1. In the comments to the previous thread about governing and support arrangements in Sweden, we had an interesting discussion about what constitutes a “bloc”. This is an ongoing discussion in Sweden itself:

    The leader of the centre-right Moderates, Ulf Kristersson, has called on Prime Minister Stefan Löfven to resign. Kristersson argues that his bloc (the Moderates, Centre Party, Liberals and Christian Democrats) is bigger than Löfven’s government coalition of the Social Democrats and the Green Party. If you take the Left Party into account, the left-wing bloc might still technically be bigger, but Kristersson argues that it is not formally part of that bloc. It will be interesting to hear what Löfven says when he takes the stage tonight. (from The Local‘s live blog, 22:40 update)

  2. This should be really interesting. The Social Democrat Prime Minister calls for an end to “bloc” politics, where the only options are a government of the left bloc or the right Alliance. He clearly wants the young leader of the Centre Party, which gained support and won 31 seats, the largest party outside the big two and the anti-immigrants, to become his deputy prime minister giving the government 175 seats, a majority. Her party wants a more liberal immigration policy than her partners in the Alliance, particularly in relation to reuniting refugee children with their families.

    • And on the final count, such a centre-left coalition would still have the 175 seats required for a majority government not subject to any possible parliamentary tactics from the Sweden Democrats. Logical?

    • Might be, but it would require the Alliance having a double-digit percentage lead among the outstanding ballots. A comparison of election night and final results of the 2014 general election indicates the main blocs were practically even among the nearly two-hundred thousand votes tallied after election night, with the Alliance parties leading by an extremely narrow margin – which barely dented the overall four percent lead of the left-wing bloc. Moreover, in that election the Feminist Initiative did quite a bit better among the outstanding ballots (polling over five percent of that sub-total), while the Sweden Democrats fared a bit worse among those voters – about two-and-a-half percentage points below their election night share of the vote.

      • My website’s Sweden page now has definitive results of last Sunday’s Riksdag election, published today by the Swedish Election Authority on its website. As in 2014, the main blocs turned out to be practically even among the more than two-hundred thousand votes tallied after election night; the Alliance parties held a narrow overall lead among those voters, but it was too small to have any significant impact on the election outcome. However, while the distribution of Riksdag seats among party blocs remained unchanged from election night, a couple seats changed hands, with the Green and Liberal parties gaining a mandate each, at the expense of the Social Democrats and the Christian Democrats.

        Also, as in previous Swedish parliamentary elections, the non-blank invalid ballot total fell dramatically (by more than 86%) in the final count: evidently, most of those ballots turned out to be valid after all, and were thus re-allocated among the parties contesting the election.

        The main beneficiary of Sweden’s nationwide compensation mandate mechanism was by far the Green Party, which obtained just five of 310 constituency seats (1.6%) with 4.4% of the vote. However, that total increased to sixteen (of 349) after the distribution of compensation seats. Incidentally, had there been no compensation mandates and had voters cast their ballots the same way, the constituency-level seat allocation would have delivered a plurality reversal, as the Alliance parties won one more seat than the left-wing parties at that level.

        Finally, I should note that in this election Sweden changed the modified Sainte-Laguë rule, to lower the initial divisor to 1.2. However, this change had no effect in the nationwide allocation of Riksdag seats, due to the four percent threshold imposed at that level.

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