Social Democrats aim to retake parliament
With less than 290 days left until Sweden's national elections, the Social Democrats announced their election strategy on Monday with a focus on jobs, education and welfare.
News agency TT reports that the party is aiming to boost voter turn out in order to take back parliament after spending the past eight years in opposition.
"We have a single goal, we want Sweden to have a Social Democrat-led government next year," said Jan Larsson, head of the party's election strategy. "The goal is to get at least 35 percent of the vote, about 15 percent more voters than from the 2010 election."
Larsson sought to draw a clear distinction between the Social Democrats and their main opponents, the center-right ruling coalition. He said the party will add resources to social programs and not continue with the liberal policies of its political rivals.
"All elections are always about making a choice. The biggest choice today is if you want to have more resources for education, health and jobs or continue with tax cuts," he said.
Swedes head to the polls for the national election in September 2014 and will also vote in May for European Union elections.
During a news conference, Larsson said the Social Democrats will reach out to some 1.5 million voters via telephone calls or neighborhood canvassing. He also said the party's promise of making Sweden's unemployment rate the lowest in the EU in 2020.
In the last elections, in 2010, the Social Democrats got just under 31 percent of the votes. Apart from the past two elections, it has been nearly 100 years since the Social Democrats polled below 35 percent. From the mid 1930s till the end of the 1980s, the party consistently received well above 40 percent of the votes.