• Sweden's news in English
 

Swedish voters flock to fringe parties: report

Published: 28 Jan 2013 17:53 GMT+01:00

The anti-immigration Sweden Democrats recorded the steepest upswing, increasing its membership compared to 2011 by 48 percent. As 2012 drew to a close, the party had about 7,900 members.

The Left Party, which attempted to help wrest power from the centre-right government in the 2010 elections by cooperating with the Greens and the Social Democrats, have seen a 9-percent increase in its membership numbers.

"The numbers paint a clear picture, people are heading away from the centre to the outer-lying fringe parties," Gothenburg University political scientist Mikael Persson told the TT news agency.

The Green Party, meanwhile, has taken the biggest beating in membership numbers, losing 9 percent of its members.

"It's quite common to lose members in between elections and then see the numbers go up in an election year," the Greens' party secretary Anders Wallner told the TT news agency.

The two main parties, the Social Democrats and the ruling Moderates, lost 5 and 4 percent of their members respectively.

"There's a good mood in the party and we're recruiting a lot of new members, many of whom are young," said Carin Jämtin, party secretary of the Social Democrats, a party with a notoriously high average age for its members.

"That we despite this are losing members mean we have to work even harder," she told TT.

Among the remaining parties, the Christian Democrats saw numbers go down by 3 percent and the Centre Party by 5 percent, while the Liberals (Folkpartiet) have yet to publish their membership figures.

Overall, Swedes are less likely today to be members of a political party than in the past. Fifty years ago, about 20 percent of eligible voters were members of a party. In 2010, that number had sunk to 3.7 percent.

In the 1990s alone, the parties lost about a third of their members.

While some observers fear a lack of political engagement is a symptom of a disengaged populace, it is an analysis not shared by political scientist Mikael Persson.

"There is no evidence that the young are less engaged today than previous generations were," he told TT.

"But their involvement takes different expressions and they deselect the parties."

TT/The Local/at

Follow The Local on Twitter

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

19:52 January 28, 2013 by johan rebel
The crypto-communists may be gaining members, but polls seem to indicate that they are losing voters.
01:04 January 29, 2013 by skumdum
SD is not a far-right party. It's a center party.
08:39 January 29, 2013 by jostein
Calling large (and growing) political parties "fringe" is like calling English a minority language in the US of A.
12:52 January 29, 2013 by Åskar
@skumdum

So, you mean that a xenophobic, racist party originating in a neo-nazism is not a far right party?
Today's headlines
Swedish troops join Somali pirate mission
A Somali pirate near Hobyo, Somalia in 2012. Photo: TT

Swedish troops join Somali pirate mission

Around 70 Swedish soldiers are heading to east Africa as part of EU efforts to prevent attacks from Somali pirates. READ  

Housing queue now '20 years' in parts of capital
Apartments in Stockholm. Photo: TT

Housing queue now '20 years' in parts of capital

The queue for housing in Stockholm lengthened dramatically 2014, with many "insecure" residents signing up because of fears the shortage of accommodation in the capital could get worse. READ  

Snow warning amid road chaos in west Sweden
A previous snowfall in Gothenburg. Photo: TT

Snow warning amid road chaos in west Sweden

Heavy snowfall overnight has caused major traffic problems in parts of western Sweden, with meteorologists warning that further bad weather is on the way across the country. READ  

Sweden will make 'demands' on Palestine
The Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas speaking in Cairo this month. Photo: TT

Sweden will make 'demands' on Palestine

Sweden’s new government recognised Palestine in its first foreign policy decision in October 2014 but Foreign Minister Margot Wallström has said the state needs to change in order to retain Sweden’s support. READ  

World reacts to notorious Swedish spy's death
Eugene Sydholt, better known as Swedish spy Stig Bergling, being released from Sweden's Anstalten Asptuna prison in 1997. Photo: TT

World reacts to notorious Swedish spy's death

News of Stig Bergling's death made global headlines on Thursday, and by the end of the day it was Twitter's 10th most trending topic in the world. READ  

Christian Democrat party leader quits politics
Christian Democrat leader Göran Hägglund is quitting politics. Photo: TT

Christian Democrat party leader quits politics

Göran Hägglund, the leader of one of Sweden's four centre-right opposition Alliance parties has resigned, insisting it had nothing to do with the controversial December Agreement that the Alliance struck with the government. READ  

Presented by Verksamt.se
Stockholm job fair helps immigrant entrepreneurs
The scene at Bazaren in Stockholm. Photo: The Local

Stockholm job fair helps immigrant entrepreneurs

One of Sweden's largest job fairs, Bazaren, kicked off in Stockholm on Thursday, with an estimated 10,000 people set to attend the event with a special focus on entrepreneurs. The Local was on hand to survey the scene. READ  

Teenage gunman threat at Gothenburg school
Police in Gothenburg are searching for the missing gunman. Photo: TT

Teenage gunman threat at Gothenburg school

A teenage gunman threatened a female teacher at a high school in Gothenburg on Thursday afternoon, before fleeing the scene. Police told The Local that a huge operation was underway, with patrol cars and a helicopter scouring the city. READ  

'Swedish Dads' project gives surprise snapshot
Bävman and his 3-year-old son, Viggo. Photo: Johan Bävman

'Swedish Dads' project gives surprise snapshot

Sweden is often described as one of the most gender-equal nations in the world, but when Swedish father Johan Bävman started a photo project about being a dad during his paternity leave, he realized his country didn't always match global expectations. READ  

Integration now second biggest voter issue
A mosque in Stockholm. Photo: TT

Integration now second biggest voter issue

Education is the top issue for Swedish voters, with integration coming second, in a new poll which also suggests growing concerns about rising Islamophobia and anti-Semitism in Sweden. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Sponsored Article
TODAY: Stockholm job fair helps immigrant entrepreneurs
Gallery
People-watching: January 28th
Gallery
IN PICTURES: European Figure Skating Championships in Stockholm
Business & Money
FATCA: 'The age of financial privacy is over'
National
Does Sweden help returning Isis fighters more than Swedish veterans?
Blog updates

26 January

The mysterious -s, part 1 (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! How is your Swedish coming along? A while ago I read on a forum on The..." READ »

 

23 January

Editor’s blog, January 23rd (The Local Sweden) »

"Happy Friday from The Local’s team in Stockholm. We can’t wait for the weekend, when we’re planning..." READ »

 
 
 
Gallery
IN PICTURES: January snow snaps
Society
Is Sweden's healthcare system a national embarassment?
Gallery
Property of the week: Skanör, Vellinge
Lifestyle
'Life as a Swedish candy-maker is sweet'
National
Why Sweden's Left party wants a European 'Red Spring'
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Sweden's hottest new fashion designers for 2015
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Who travels on Stockholm's different subway lines?
Lifestyle
Why this Swedish baby is a US hit
Lifestyle
'Limousine' snowplough for sale
People-watching: January 24th - 25th
Gallery
People-watching: January 24th - 25th
Society
Meet the 'beggars' buttoning up immigration critics
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden this week
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Princess Madeleine through the years
Features
Learn Sweden's bizarre dating lingo
People-watching: January 21st - 22nd
Gallery
People-watching: January 21st - 22nd
Society
Why Sweden's viral 'genital' video is getting an English remake
National
Why does Sweden's Luleå have a giant ice beaver?
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Who are Sweden's richest one percent?
Business & Money
How a classic Swedish snack got a revamp for 'busy' Stockholmers
Lifestyle
The Local's top Swedish acts for 2015
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Sweden's Årets Bild photography prize winners
Business & Money
'I met my Swedish man in Tokyo's first Ikea store'
Gallery
Property of the week: A cozy apartment in Bromma, Stockholm
Gallery
People-watching: January 17th - 18th
Lifestyle
How to make Swedish gravad lax
Lifestyle
Four hot Swedish home design trends
National
How The Local's video on a strange Swedish sound went viral
Gallery
People-watching: January 14th
National
The Local's guide to Europe in statistics - from Spain to Sweden
Politics
Paris attacks: Knock-on effects in Sweden and across Europe
National
Swedish Muslims react to new Charlie Hebdo magazine
National
The Local talks to Sweden's Home Affairs Minister about Paris attacks
Business & Money
Will Spotify launch on stock market after users rocket?
Accelerated
Texans and Swedes to play ice instruments
Gallery
Property of the week: An 18th century mansion in Stockholm
Business & Money
'Snowboarding drew me to work in chilly Sweden'
National
Are Sweden's royals moving to London?
National
How Sweden's Charlie Hebdo rally broke a winter protest record
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Princess Madeleine through the years
Sponsored Article
Everything you need to know about moving to Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

1,126
jobs available
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
psdmedia.se
Counselling and Psychotherapy in English
Sometimes living in another culture can cause stress, confusion and feelings of sadness and loneliness. Talking to a professional psychotherapist/counsellor might help you. I am a UKCP Reg. psychotherapist. My practice is in Södermalm, Stockholm.
Contact me to discuss your options