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Government Rides High In New Electoral Poll

Published lördag 4 april 2009 kl 12.40
Prime Minister Reinfeldt backed by the public

Sweden’s centre-right coaltion government is riding high in the polls with a Demoskop survey published in Saturday’s Expressen newspaper suggesting that the alliance now enjoys a five point lead over the Social Democrat led opposition, the first time they’ve enjoyed such a lead since shortly after the 2006 election.

The government polled 50 percent of public support compared to 45 percent for the opposition Social Democrat, Green and left parties. The poll, published in the daily Expressen, questioned 1,000 people from March 25 to April 2.

The biggest factor in the electoral swing is the rise in support of Prime Minister Fredrick Reinfeldt’s Moderate Party, which according to the poll, has now overtaken the Social Democrats as the largest political party with 35.5 percent support.

The Moderate Party secretary Per Schlingman told the TT news agency that the poll was a reflection on how the government had handled the current financial crisis.

The Social Democrats, traditionally Sweden’s governing party, saw its support fall by 8.6 percent to 30.9 percent.

The Social Democrat party secretary Ibrahim Baylan believed the drop in his party’s support was attributable to the recent scandal involving the LO trade Union head Wanja Lundby-Wedin who sat on the board of pensions firm AMF which awarded large pension pay-outs and bonuses to its top executives while cutting its pay-outs to the general public signed up to their pensions scheme.

However, it wasn’t all good news for the governmental alliance , with two of the coalition parties, the Christian Democrats and the Centre Party both falling under the four percent parliamentary threshold , which means that according to the poll, they would both be outside of parliament if there was an election today.

The anti-immigrant Sweden Democrat party meanwhile enjoyed a large rise in support to 4.2 percent of Swedes. Many experts are waiting to see how they perform in June’s election for the European parliament.

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