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Sweden's youth back opposition parties: poll

The Local · 30 Jun 2010, 12:28

Published: 30 Jun 2010 12:28 GMT+02:00

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At the same time, youth support for the ruling Alliance coalition is at a record low, a special survey done by Sifo for Svenska Dagbladet shows.

"The government's problem regarding young people is probably that they have not come up with a vision of the future," Toivo Sjörén, who is responsible for Sifo's opinion polls, told the newspaper.

The latest poll, conducted earlier this month, revealed that the centre-left red-greens have 56 percent support among 18 to 29-year-olds compared with 32 percent for the centre-right Alliance, a gap of nearly 25 percentage points.

"They (the youth) do not think that taxes are important, they are interested in the bigger picture and want to talk about their future and they are mainly are attracted to the Green Party," Sjörén explained.

Sjörén added that young people are more trend-sensitive and more fickle in their political allegiances. This is particularly evident among the youngest voters: about half a million are eligible to vote for the first time in September.

The party with the highest youth support is the Social Democrats at 34 percent and the Green Party at 16 percent. The Left Party has the same level of support as in the regular Sifo poll at around 6 percent.

Separately, the nationalist Sweden Democrats and the Pirate Party together have the backing of nearly 12 percent Sweden's youth.

The centre-left parties have held the upper hand among Sweden's younger voters since the late 1990s. In the 2002 election year the gap was at its greatest, with the left-leaning coalition enjoying almost twice the support of the centre-right.

High youth unemployment which persisted in the 2000s meant that support waned for the sitting Social Democrat government among the nation's younger generations and during 2005 and 2006, support was almost even.

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Youth unemployment remains a significant problem in Sweden's strictly regulated labour market, with the Social Democrats regularly criticising the government for not doing enough to tackle "mass unemployment."

The government retorts that significant numbers of young people registered as unemployed are in fact students.

Despite the low confidence shown by Sweden's youth, the same Sifo poll indicated that overall support for the centre-right coalition had eclipsed the opposition for the first time since the 2006 election.

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

15:02 June 30, 2010 by calebian22
"Any man who is under 30, and is not a liberal, has no heart; and any man who is over 30, and is not a conservative, has no brains."

- Sir Winston Churchill

No big surprises in this poll.
15:20 June 30, 2010 by amuharun
Yes we need focus on future. Not just making us foolish with giving some extra money from tax reduction. Change does not mean people have to overstress. We want to live happily and peacefully. We want stabilize job better future. Utilize resource in right way. Effective social welfare system. We want to help other at the same time we want to get help when we need. Hope so this poll will bring other political parties in right track.
15:34 June 30, 2010 by Audrian
The youth could the looming danger facing them: unemployment and global warming. The former is the shortrun problem, which politicians focus while the later is the long term problem, which the young has to fight for.
16:25 June 30, 2010 by ccnyberg
Swedens Democrats are starting to look better and better to me, however, there controversial stance is making me swing to the right Allians för Sverige. The social democrats need to get there sh*t together. Money seems to appearing from nowhere in the budget plus the leader spends tax money as if it was hers (or so it seems to me)

Im going to give the right a chance before changing my vote to the reds. They seem to be doing alright so far.
16:37 June 30, 2010 by eZee.se
Greens/Pirate party gets my vote... and a few of my pals/sisters.

17:25 June 30, 2010 by voiceofreason
Most of them lack direction anyway. They will back anything but the incumbent.

Its just another form of rebellion for them just like they did against their parents, the school, and the society.
19:41 June 30, 2010 by Jannik
Sweden democrats is the only party willing to seriously question the muslim colonization of Sweden. For this reason they get my vote.
23:17 June 30, 2010 by expert
@Jannik, why don't you just sit down someday and talk to a muslim with a smiling face, you will see the affection in return. Hating muslims and mocking their religion would definitely do the same in return. Just have dialogue. I am willing to do.... I extend my hand....
23:36 June 30, 2010 by Cze
"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money"

Margaret Thatcher
00:24 July 1, 2010 by Mr. Puppy
I'm deciding between the greens and the pirate party.

All this talk about right and left is crap, though. Whether you vote left or right, reality doesn't change: life is about going to work. Both sides want people to work and both sides want to succeed, therefore I'm confident that society won't fall apart with either choice.

So the decision must come down to other things than just classic left/right bullcrap. There are more pressing things to base your vote on.

How about the lack of respect from all Swedish parties for the right to privacy and personal integrity?

The Social Democrats haven't been that good in this area in the past so I don't trust them... it's a good thing they won't be able to ever rule on their own again, but Reinfeldt's government has actually gone further than S now in not being good in that area... which tips the scales just barely in favor of the red-greens, though I would never vote outright for the social democrats who are just too populist for my taste.
02:38 July 1, 2010 by Luke35711
Please, correct me if I am wrong, but socialdemocrats never ruled in coalition with left party before, right? So, this coalition might bring a seismic shift to the left, either socially or economically. Am I right to be scarred?

@Mr. Puppy

It took me several years to understand that the fundamental premise of Swedish public life is that there is no such thing as an individual, there is only the society. Poetically speaking, Swedes think they are self-ruling herds of horses

roaming freely the green pastures of their vast Northern land.. It probably goes back hundreds of years; so far North, there has never been strong rule of law, at least not in the Roman tradition. There are cultural reasons why all politics here is center or left-of-center.
03:54 July 1, 2010 by Rebel
Well, if politicians in Sweden were as devious as those in the USA they would hold a huge festival far from any voting areas the days of the vote and offer free alcohol! Young Swedes would choose being drunk over participation in politics anytime. Heck, if given a choice between sex and beer the average Swedish male would allow himself to be castrated if the reward was a lifetime supply of free beer.
04:58 July 1, 2010 by Luke35711
Presumably, this is because to get some, you would actually need to tidy up throw away all those empty cans. I agree, so much cooler to be a narcissistic postmodern man and don't bother with the trash and the dishes. Pity this nirvana will only last for one generation, as there won't be a new one. Procreation is out of fashion! Only fashion is in fashion ;o
06:26 July 1, 2010 by sweco1
THey do not know who they are voting for.

I know I voter for the wrong party when I was youth.
10:10 July 1, 2010 by samwise
You can probably tell a party from the people it attracts.

It must feel pretty good voting on taking and spending other people's possessions, while praising my good heart.

Fortunately people do grow, I mean most people do.
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