Wednesday, January 19

Sweden: Magdalena Andersson elected Prime Minister, first woman in this post

Social Democrat leader Magdalena Andersson was elected Prime Minister by the Swedish parliament on Wednesday, becoming the first woman to lead the Nordic kingdom, after days of difficult negotiations.

Until now Minister of Finance of the resigned Prime Minister Stefan Löfven, she succeeds him by the smallest of margins, thanks to a vote of deputies with 117 votes in favor, 57 abstentions and 174 against.

In Sweden, a government has “passed” as long as an absolute majority of 175 deputies does not vote its censure.

In extremis, this 54-year-old economist and former high-level swimmer landed an agreement with the Left Party on Tuesday evening, the last support she lacked to take power.

Visibly moved, she got up to the applause of her camp to be handed her charge by the president of the Riksdag.

The succession to the head of Sweden comes less than a year from the legislative elections of September 2022 which promise to be tight.

Worn out by seven years in power and weakened by a political crisis at the beginning of the summer, Stefan Löfven had announced in August that he would resign in November.

Despite being a champion of gender equality, Sweden has so far never had a female prime minister, unlike all the other Nordic countries.

Bad surprise, however, for the new Prime Minister: if it allowed her accession to power, the Center party announced Wednesday morning that it would not support the government budget because of the agreement made with the Left Party.

Magdalena Andersson is therefore threatened with governing without the budget she had prepared, but with the project prepared by the right-wing opposition with the support of the anti-immigration far-right Sweden Democrats (SD)

The only Social Democrat candidate to succeed Stefan Löfven, “Magda” Andersson took over as party leader in early November.

His appointment to the rank of head of government now acquired, his big challenge will now be to keep the Social Democrats in power next September.

As evidenced by the budget, it is faced with the unprecedented rapprochement of the conservative Moderates party, led by Ulf Kristersson, with Jimmie Åkesson’s Democrats of Sweden.

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