fb-pixel

Swedish parliament rejects proposed government

Annie Loof, (right), leader of Sweden’s Center Party,  and Jimmie Åkesson, head of the emerging Sweden Democrats, follow the proceedings Tuesday in parliament in Stockholm.
Annie Loof, (right), leader of Sweden’s Center Party, and Jimmie Åkesson, head of the emerging Sweden Democrats, follow the proceedings Tuesday in parliament in Stockholm. (JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)

STOCKHOLM — Over two months after elections that left Sweden in political limbo, lawmakers on Wednesday rejected a proposed minority coalition led by the second-largest party, the first time in Swedish history that a proposal for a new prime minister has been defeated.

Parliament voted by 195 votes to 154 to reject the Speaker’s plan for a coalition of the center-right Moderates and the small Christian Democrats, with Moderates leader Ulf Kristersson as prime minister.

Those opposing the coalition said it would give influence to the anti-immigrant Sweden Democrats — the third-largest party but considered a pariah by many — because the government would be dependent on that party’s support.

Advertisement



Wednesday’s vote was the first of a possible four before Speaker Andreas Norlen must call new elections.

It was the first time that a candidate for prime minister has been rejected by the 349-seat Riksdagen.

Norlen said he would continue talks with party leaders on Thursday.

The September election produced a hung parliament with the left-leaning side and the center-right bloc securing about 40 percent of the vote each, leaving neither with a majority and paving the way for months of uncertainty and complex coalition talks.