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Greens advance while Centre trails: poll

Published: 17 Feb 2013 11:17 GMT+01:00

Sifo's February survey, published in the Göteborgs-Posten and Svenska Dagbladet newspapers, shows that the Green Party climbed by two percentage points to eleven percent.

The Centre Party and the Christian Democrats meanwhile came in at 3.6 percent, below the 4 percent threshold for parliamentary seats and thus posing a potential threat to the governing Alliance coalition.

The Sweden Democrats declined for the second poll in a row, to 8.5 percent, which remains above their 5.7 percent showing at the 2008 general election.

Political scientist Jenny Madestam however played down the significance of the survey, coming some 18 months before Sweden goes to the polls.

"We have seen this before, that one longs for what one hasn't got," she said.

"The Green Party has also gained a stable position in Swedish politics. They are perceived as independent of both the government and the Social Democrats."

Madestam however warned that the plight of the Centre Party and the Christian Democrats could pose problems for the government if their low ratings persist as the election nears.

"In part, it is a question of which of the parties to give a supporting vote, if you want a centre-right government, and in part there is a fear that tactical voting is a wasted vote when parties fall below the threshold."

Madestam explained that the parties "have serious identity issues" among voters.

"Who are they? The voters don't know."

"The Centre party has tried to do something about this with their party programme, and that is the kind of work that needs to be done."

Both the Social Democrats and the Moderates declined in the February poll - the former down 2.3 percentage points and the latter by 0.3.

The three red-green opposition parties have a combined total of 48 percent of voters against the four-party Alliance coalition's 42.4 - a difference of 5.6 percentage points.

The Green Party's rise is however the only statistically significant change.

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

15:23 February 17, 2013 by Iraniboy
Since last year all polls suggest that Alliansen and in more specific Moderaterna are going to lose the government in the next election and new era of Social Democracy will rule the Sweden! This is mainly due to extreme loss of Center Party and Christian Democrats. The recent Center Party's scandal had a biggest impact. Center Party didn't realize that most of their supporters do not want controversial issue! The main problem with Christian Democrats however is that Swedes no matter religious or non-religious do not feel comfortable to vote for a party with a religion name on it.
15:43 February 17, 2013 by grymagnusson
They did 18 months before the last election too. Sahlin and the gang just believed they had to cruise on through to victory. A week is a long time in politics.
21:14 February 17, 2013 by Hisingen
These surveys appear with monotonous regularity, and more often than not get it wrong when election time comes round. In a way it is just another source of emplioyment for those carrying out the surveys, and journalists being what - and who - they are, they report as they think best, no matter what.
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