Sweden: The Social Democrats’ leaders invited to form a new government
Published Thursday 11 November 2021 | 07:26
Updated 5 hours, 53 minutes ago
COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) – On Thursday, the Speaker of the Swedish Parliament instructed the leader of the Social Democratic Party to try to form a new government, which would make Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson the Scandinavian country’s first female Prime Minister, if she is successful.
Parliament Speaker Andreas Norlen said that Andersson must state no later than Tuesday whether she can find sufficient support in the lower house of parliament, the Riksdag with 349 seats, to form a cabinet.
Andersson, 54, was elected to lead the Social Democrats during their regular congress on November 4, after Prime Minister Stefan Lofven announced in August that he was resigning from the party post.
Lofven, 64, who resigned as prime minister on Wednesday, will continue to lead the Swedish government in an administrative capacity until a new government is formed.
The current Social Democratic-Green governing coalition hopes to secure Andersson’s confirmation as prime minister with the support of two smaller parties. Sweden has a parliamentary election set for September 11, 2022.
The Social Democrats currently have 100 of the Riksdag’s 349 seats and the Greens have 16 seats. One of the coalition’s long-awaited allies, the Center Party, said on Wednesday that its legislators would abstain from the vote on Andersson, which paves the way for her appointment as prime minister.
The small Left Party has not yet said whether its legislators would take part in a confirmation vote.
According to the Swedish constitution, prime ministers can govern as long as a parliamentary majority – at least 175 legislators – is not against them.
Earlier on Thursday, Ulf Kristersson, head of the opposition Moderaterna, which is Sweden’s second largest party, said that a center-right government is not feasible because no mainstream parties want to cooperate with the right-wing populist Sweden Democrats, who are rooted in a neo-Nazi movement.