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Swedes back pensioner king to carry on

TT/Peter Vinthagen Simpson · 1 Mar 2010, 11:34

Published: 01 Mar 2010 11:34 GMT+01:00

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The king has the support of 62 percent of Swedes to carry on and not abdicate in favour of his daughter, Crown Princess Victoria, according to a new poll by Synovate published in Dagens Nyheter (DN) on Monday.

While the crown princess, whose marriage to Daniel Westling is the summer highlight of the royal calender, remains the most popular member of the royal family, Swedes feels that she should wait before assuming the throne, the poll shows.

"There is no strong call for Victoria to take over," Synovate opinion analyst Nicklas Källebring told DN.

Support for the king to remain on the throne is stronger among men than women, and among centre-right voters than left. Support for Victoria to take over when the king reaches the pension age of 65 next year is strongest amongst Left Party voters, with 30 percent backing an abdication.

The poll also shows a slight division between rural and urban Sweden with city-dwellers giving greater backing to the king's continued reign.

A large majority are in favour of the king continuing until death, or serious illness, while 15 percent were in favour of setting a time limit. Only 1 percent want a change to happen immediately.

The monarchy remains highly popular in Sweden with 74 percent expressing support in a 2009 Synovate poll and only 19 percent favouring the abolition. Support has however declined somewhat in recent years.

Story continues below…

The status of the monarchy is not uncontroversial however with members of parliament over-represented in their republican views. Sweden's newly appointed EU affairs minister Birgitta Ohlsson is a former chairperson of the Republikanska Föreningen (RF), the leading republican association in Sweden.

DN/Synovate interviewed 1,038 for the poll conducted from February 22nd-25th.

TT/Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

13:44 March 1, 2010 by Kevin Harris
74% for, 19% against; that settles that then. Would it be too much to ask the minority republicans (19%) to respect the decision of the overwhelming majority (74%), as is proper in a democratic system? I think it might be.
14:25 March 1, 2010 by Åskar
A country where the head of state inherits the job is not by my definition be a democracy.
14:29 March 1, 2010 by LailaC1
You can't get more democratic than Sweden. This is our history you are criticising. Don't like it, then leave.
14:50 March 1, 2010 by Angusthefirst
It wouldn't matter if the knugen keeps going for a few years yet: his base level of intelligence is so low that even if he becomes senile no one will know the difference.

Kevin Harris, the numbers would be much more even with a media that wasn't so sickenly sycophantic towards the royals as the Swedish one. If more people learned what a waste of space this monarchy is the numbers would be much higher. Askar above is spot-on, inheriting the tob job is not democratic and I can't for the life of me work out why anyone would want to support such people as this PR controlled family as the Swedish Royals. They're rich enough, they don't need ANY tax money of ours.
14:50 March 1, 2010 by G Kin
Why should the king retire? If he is in a good mental state untill the day of his death that is perfect.

It is not a democracy or an ordinary job. It is a cultural thing and I think the older it is the better it gets.

I however have one question for the swedes.

What was your cultural practice in terms of who survives the king?

I hear people talk about a switch from king to crown princess. Just mentain the culture as it was.
14:55 March 1, 2010 by Angusthefirst
G Kin said:

"If he is in a good mental state untill the day of his death that is perfect."

You obviously know very little about this king: he's never been in a good mental state. One of the stupidest guys in Sweden (signed his name "Knugen" called Brunei a "great democracy" the list goes on.....). So much for Sweden being a meritocracy if this simpleton can be your head of state.
15:14 March 1, 2010 by davo339
how ironic. 'stupidest' is not a word.
15:16 March 1, 2010 by livinginsweden
@ LailaC1

I share with you ... 'This is our history. Don't like it , then leave.'.. that is if those who criticized are not Swedish.

I also wish that we don't criticize other countries for their history, culture and way of doing things ..... instead of trying to impose our views and 'values' on them.

I wonder why certain 'human beings' have a need to have or worship a king or queen or prince or princess ... after all they are just human beings .... no smarter than the average person... not prettier or handsomer .. or even if they are ... why should they be classed as royalties?

Birg. O and others feel they don't have to look up to or 'worship' another human being as king.... to justify that their existence on earth is lower than that of a king ... or leave the country...

... and we cannot get more democratic than Sweden? ... depends on how you define it. Getting the tax payers to fund the lifestyle of one particular family in the country is may I say ....????

ha ha
15:30 March 1, 2010 by Angusthefirst

It's not cut and dried, certainly in formal speech and the most official dictionaries one must use "most stupid" but in ordinary speech/slang it is used regularly. Language is living. I guess as a royalist you'd be cgoing for the most proper usage all the time.

16:03 March 1, 2010 by hpunlimited
Long live the King! Death to the republicans and other enemies of the state. IF you find yourself with corrupt politicians, only the KING can save the Swedes from tyranny.

The first thing Adolf Hitler did when he came to power was to use the death of the german "kaiser" to set Germany into a complete nazi state. If Germany would have had their "kaiser"/king alive, to keep an eye on Hitler, then WWII would never have happened. Live and learn.
16:13 March 1, 2010 by Kooritze
Father and Daughter have very different chins!!
19:05 March 1, 2010 by Sjayna
The monarchy is an useless and undemocratic system, so time to abolish the Swedish monarchy...immediately!
19:38 March 1, 2010 by sigfus45
My family history of having ancestors leave for Iceland a thousand years ago to avoid monarchists, elitest, and such class concious concerns took a short turn on a different road in 1971. Living and woking in a northern Canada boom town with various camps, new houses and entertainment limited to booze palaces; muddy roads, lack of sisewalks and street lighting changed with the impending arrival of Queen Elizabeth. Within months, hundreds of derelict vehicles in front yards were replaced by grass, roads were paved, sidewalks poured, anything that didn't move got painted.

I hadn't realized that the Queen was not the anachronism of government that I had thought, but rather she set a good example of stability. I an still not a monarchist rather I appreciate that she sets a much needed example in this world.
21:21 March 1, 2010 by Tim Harrison
A country can have a king and still be a democracy. Many people seem to forget that the king of Sweden does not have any power and does not rule the country.
23:24 March 1, 2010 by Da Goat
Pension eh?

I thought he was already on a pension! I guess that means taking a pay cut to become a real pensioner...... maybe it would be an excellent thing seeing as the poor oldies are on coffee rations the kungen could become an advocate for pensioners!

Imagine the money to be saved if we put him on a pension! I am sure he has a nice summer house he could retire to someplace, then again he probably will not be able to afford the upkeep so will need to keep on working until death like everyone else!
23:42 March 1, 2010 by jimfromcanada
As a citizen of another country that is a constitutional monarchy, I support the idea of having the head of state being separate from the head of the government. It means that the head of the political apparatus can not use the trappings and cultural focus of the head of state for political purposes.

Whether or not it is better, or more expensive to elect and maintain a presidency or a hereditary monarchy is a question every country has to answer for themselves. Having an elected head of state usually means that they then have some political role. This will diminish the political role of the prime minister and the elected house.

The process of change from a monarchy to a presidency may incur some social and political costs in itself, including a polarization. A monarchy usually involves an additional amount of stability that can offset rapid populist swings in public opinion.
00:34 March 2, 2010 by PonceDeLeon
I love the poles taken in Sweden.. Ask ten people and come to conclusion.. Give me a break...-The margin of error is greater than the sample taken..GET REAL!!!
07:36 March 2, 2010 by Tutu
Swedes tend to have an inferior complex by definition

I beg to disagree with the above comment. Swedes are cold and withdrawn but proud and self confident. if you are referring to the superstar or superman culture, then i will say that swedes are not flashy. we could see how well Reinfelt handled the isrealis and how Erisson performed as england coach. Swedes dont make noise but are proud and very determined in what they do. Not being vulgar should not be mistaken for weakness
09:20 March 2, 2010 by adshasta
.....member of the royal family, Swedes feels that she should wait...(2nd sentence),

Swedes feels???
20:20 March 2, 2010 by Alex Coman
"The list shows that monarchy is a traditional thing in many countries. I'm not disputing that."

You, traitor! Voices from your head will punish you!

"Things like slavery were also considered traditional by some" strange comparison, another movie, I was talking about 21 century in some of the most civilized countries in this world. This world!

"It seems that you have never encountered an anti-monarchist in your life before me."

All hail THE MAN! Nietzsche waited for you all his life...

I m Romanian, Romania is an ex hard line communist country. And people with emotional problem I see almost every day (I have to, is my job).
21:35 March 2, 2010 by malcolmt
@Alex Coman and Kevin Harris

Come on guys, you have to admit, Angus has you covered at every turn! Very entertaining stuff but you've been beaten on every point. Why don't you guys just admit that you think the Royals are better than you and you enjoy looking up to them?
13:56 March 3, 2010 by Angusthefirst

Well, it is not that hard to have this pair covered.

You have on the one hand Kevin Harris who somehow believes that those who support the notion that a head of state should be the best qualified/elected person in a country, that everyone should have the chance to be the head of state in any country, and most importantly, someone isn't head of state through accident of birth (like the knugen) are supporting and advocating a "crackpot theory" and are "deranged".

On the other hand you have Alex Co(n)man who has been quoted as saying that royals are somehow divinely chosen by the almighty! Extraordinary stuff, you really couldn't make up what these two are saying.

Who's worse? Alex Co(n)man by a nose. For someone in the modern age to believe that a monarch has a divine right to rule is bordering on the insane.
19:59 March 3, 2010 by Alex Coman
Oh, Anusthefirst, you get tired so quickly! You simply just can t read what people here write.

I made it clear that while the majority of swedish are atheist, they are royalist now mainlynbecause of THEIR political tradition. Hard to understand? Too hard for you???

If it is so, why can t just comprehend a simple thing like that:


Too hard for you, I guess.

Another one: most of the swedish people want their country to be as it is, a monarchy. Statistics. I hope you can t fight with that too.

There are not many of us, monarchist, on the internet, because we raise kids, we have one or two jobs, we use soap and water and so on.

Good to be back, thank you, thank you all!!!
11:27 March 4, 2010 by Kevin Harris
Angusthefirst and Malcolmt are the same person. You gave yourself away Angus. How incredibly sad.
14:14 March 4, 2010 by RobinHood
:( :( :( :( rofl
20:07 March 4, 2010 by vonrudenborg
I hope he stays one. I'm a second generation American of Swedish ancestry and I like having a monarch who has the same name (almost) as I do! Carl Gustav
18:00 March 6, 2010 by randyt
I think having this monarchy type structure as a back up is a good idea. Gives folks a sense of having a 'king' wihout having to elect a president and having half your citizens at any given election peroid view him/her as a king/queen.
08:33 March 8, 2010 by malcolmt
@ Kevin Harris

Ha ha, wrong there fella, I'm a Brit who just moved here Sweden and stumbled on to this paper. Love a good bit of banter and have to say you were owned even if I'm not fussed either way about Royalty, though my gran back home is.

Why does a young bloke like yourself have the same opinions as my 89 year old gran in Bootle is more the question here :). Are you and my gran the same person?
07:21 April 17, 2010 by csence
The Swedish Royal Family is the pride of Sweden and should be.

The King is more democratic than most politicians. He holds little power, but is a great attraction for Sweden and a fabulous tradition. Disliking them can only be put down to "jealousy". Yet, their job is not exactly enviable, always having to be on your perfect behaviour, and not having any privacy.....although,.... those dresses and jewels, .......:)

Anyone thinking they are a waste of money, don't realize how much money they bring to Sweden. And this years Royal Wedding(s) will bring in millions in tourist dollars, oops kronor.. it is going to be great for the Swedish economy. Between all the business' it will take to furnish the wedding and tourists spending in hotels, restaurants, tourist attractions, shops etc... they will boom financially and therefor pay more taxes to the Swedish state, i am sure whatever the wedding costs, will be recouped, if not a profit made.

Besides, this recession is getting awfully glum and boring, we need a little pomp and stomp to cheer us up.
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