• Sweden's news in English

Absentee voting begins in Swedish elections

AFP/The Local · 6 Aug 2010, 07:23

Published: 06 Aug 2010 07:23 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Nearly 132,780 eligible Swedish voters living abroad could vote from Thursday on a second term for Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt's centre-right alliance, or for Social Democrat leader Mona Sahlin's leftwing coalition.

Sweden's parliamentary system has traditionally lent itself to election races featuring a number of smaller parties running separately.

But this year the two large blocs -- and only two main candidates -- are facing off against each other for the first time, leading commentators to compare the vote to a presidential election.

Reinfeldt, who just turned 45, is eager to focus the debate on his government's record on handling the economy which has made a roaring comeback after an initial hit from the global financial crisis.

"Our focus today is that we want to continue along the same path," Reinfeldt told AFP.

"Our public finances are in good order," he added at a press conference, stressing that "we are not facing public debt levels similar to other European countries hit by the budget crisis."

While handed points for its economic policies, Reinfeldt's four-party government however faces criticism for social reforms and cuts to the Scandinavian country's generous welfare state, as well as soaring unemployment among young people.

Those issues top the agenda of the opposition, with Sahlin angling to become Sweden's first woman prime minister by presenting the election as a choice between "policies towards more employment and more gender equality or towards more unemployment and inequality."

The 53-year-old veteran of the Social Democratic Party, which has dominated Swedish political life for most of the 20th century, has been in training for

Story continues below…

the top government seat for years.

She has been patiently rebuilding her image since a dramatic fall from grace in the 1990s when she was caught purchasing chocolate and other items on her party credit card in the so-called Toblerone Affair.

The two blocs have been neck-to-neck in recent polls, and observers say if neither wins a clear majority next month, the small but increasingly popular far-right Sweden Democrats party might not only enter parliament for the first time but could even play king-maker and determine the outcome of the election.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

09:14 August 6, 2010 by Pont-y-garreg
"Absentee voting beings"?

Get someone who can write good English to do this headline. This is nonsense.
10:14 August 6, 2010 by Puffin
They mean Postal Voting from abroad :D
10:19 August 6, 2010 by shame, shame
for you Brits out there, the US English term "absentee voting" - which presumably fits better as a headline - is adequately explained in the first para, don't ya think..
15:31 August 6, 2010 by millionmileman
I am reading a couple of US references here. One referance I hope is not emulated in Sweden, is the blatent identity theft and fraud, practiced here in Wisconsin, which is in the top two ares of shame, perpotrated by "Acorn," in this country.
15:37 August 6, 2010 by Puffin
Actually I think a direct translation of the Swedish term as 'Early Voting' actually works better

Obviously in the context of people with knowledge of British politics the term 'Absentee voting' has a specific and very negative association owing to its historical abuses in the 18th Century as a means to manipulate parliamentary power - which is probably now what you intended to convey.
15:53 August 6, 2010 by stenhuggaren
In Swedish it would most likely be brevrösta, förhandsrösta or utlandsrösta.

Perhaps proxy voting is an alternative in UK English but google absentee voting and you get a whole raft of federal US links, so it is completely correct English usage.
Today's headlines
Trollhättan remembers school attack victims
'It was an attack on all of Sweden,' Education Minister Gustav Fridolin said. Photo: Thomas Johansson/ TT

Hundreds of people on Saturday turned out for a torchlight procession in the small town of Trollhättan in southwestern Sweden to honour the victims of last year’s deadly school attack there.

Sweden wants emission-free cars in EU by 2030
Photo: Jessica Gow/ TT

Sweden's environment minister on Saturday urged the European Union to ban petrol and diesel-powered vehicles from 2030.

Hundreds protest Swedish asylum laws
Around 1,000 people protested in Stockholm. Photo: Fredrik Persson/ TT

Hundreds of people on Saturday demonstrated in Stockholm and in many other parts of the country to protest Sweden’s tough new laws on asylum-seekers.

Dylan removes Nobel-mention from website
The American musician has more or less responded to the news with silence. Photo: Per Wahlberg

American singer-song writer Bob Dylan has removed any mention of him being named one of this year’s Nobel Prize laureates on his official website.

Refugee crisis
Asylum requests in Sweden down by 70 percent
Sweden's migration minister Morgan Johansson. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

Sweden received 70 percent fewer requests for asylum in the period between January and September 2016 than it did during the same time last year, the country’s justice and migration minister Morgan Johansson has revealed.

The unique story of Stockholm's floating libraries
The Stockholm archipelago book boat. Photo: Roger Hill.

Writer Roger Hill details his journeys on the boats that carry books over Stockholm's waterways and to its most remote places.

Refugee crisis
Second Stockholm asylum centre fire in a week
The new incident follows a similar fire in Fagersjö last week (pictured). Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Police suspect arson in the blaze, as well as a similar incident which occurred last Sunday.

More misery for Ericsson as losses pile up
Ericsson interim CEO Jan Frykhammar presenting its third quarter results. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

The bad news just keeps coming from the Swedish telecoms giant.

Facebook 'sorry' for removing Swedish cancer video
A computer displaying Facebook's landing page. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

The social media giant had censored a video explaining how women should check for suspicious lumps in their breasts.

Watch this amazing footage of Sweden’s landscapes
A still from the aerial footage of Sweden. Photo: Nate Summer-Cook

The spectacular drone footage captures both Sweden's south and the opposite extreme, thousands of kilometres north.

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Here's where it could snow in central Sweden this weekend
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
7 reasons you should join Sweden's 'a-kassa'
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
People-watching: October 12th
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
Missing rune stone turns up in Sweden
Nobel Prize 2016: Chemistry
jobs available