Social Democrat candidates are highest earners

Of all the candidates standing at the Swedish election in September, the Social Democrats are the highest earners, according to a research carried out by Statistics Sweden on behalf of Swedish Radio.

Despite maintaining its long-held image as the party of the workers, the Social Democrat candidates standing in the national and local elections have overtaken the Moderates in the salary league.

“This is a problem for the Social Democrats, in that they have for a long time been a party which represents the weak in society,” said Tommy Möller, professor of political science, to SR.

Almost 40% of the Social Democrat candidates in the parliamentary election earn more than 400,000 kronor a year, or 33,000 kronor a month. Among the population as a whole, only one in ten have an income at that level.

As well as being the best-represented party at the top end of the income scale, the Social Democrats also have the fewest low-income candidates. Only 17% of those standing for the party earn less than 200,000 kronor per year.

In local council elections there is more diversity. The Social Democrats still have the fewest low-income candidates, while the Moderates have the highest-paid candidates.

Tommy Möller explained to SR that one reason why the Social Democrats are so well-endowed in the wallet department could be that they have made careers out of politics.

“We have many so-called professional politicians within the Social Democrats. By that I mean those for whom politics is their livelihood in one way or another. They are ombudsmen, political secretaries or elected representatives,” said Professor Möller.