Sweden: Ruling Social Democrats Facing Worst Ever EU Election Result

Sweden
JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images
CHRIS TOMLINSON

The ruling Swedish Social Democrats could be facing their worst European Parliament election result ever, according to a new poll that puts the populist Sweden Democrats on a near equal footing.

The poll, released by Sifo, shows the Social Democrats on just 21.9 per cent, down from their 2014 result of 24.2 per cent, Swedish newspaper Goteborgs-Posten reports.

Professor of political science Henrik Ekengren Oscarsson commented on the new poll saying, “The new poll, a week before the EU election, develops into a nightmare for the major government-bearing parties in Sweden. Now, the big parties have never had a great EU election, but the trend is terrible.”

The centre-right Moderates are also on course to see their worst ever European election result according to the poll, with Oscarsson blaming the decrease on the rise of the conservative Christian Democrats, who have doubled their numbers since 2014.

The populist Sweden Democrats (SD) are also seeing a massive surge in the polls relative to their starting point, and stand only a few points away from the Social Democrats on 19.9 per cent.

However, Toivo Sjörén, Head of Opinion at Sifo, warned that “The figures are shaky for SD because many sympathizers are hesitant about whether to vote. For their part, it is not about taking voters from other parties, but motivating the voters to go and vote.”

While the Sweden Democrats have seen a great increase in poll numbers, they have also seen some of the most radical opposition from their political opponents, including the beating of a 15-year-old out campaigning for the party earlier this week in Borås.

A historically bad election result for the Social Democrats in the European elections would follow another historic low in last year’s Swedish national elections, with the party placing far below previous election results.

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