Sweden’s five craziest Donald Trump stories

After what has felt like an endless period of campaigning the US presidential election is almost over, and that also means an end to the often unique Swedish takes on the race to the White House. With that in mind, The Local looks back on five of Sweden's craziest US election stories.

Sweden's five craziest Donald Trump stories
Donald Trump vs Joel Kinnaman has been a Swedish feature of 2016. Paul Sancya/AP & Joel Ryan/AP

1. Who wants to trump Trump?

What do you get when Swedish humour and Swedish tech-skills combine? A website where you can blast a trumpet in Donald Trump’s face (and hair), of course.

Back in February a few Swedish creatives came up with the simple idea of taking the US presidential candidate’s second name literally, but they soon discovered that putting it into practice was more complex than it seemed.

It was “fairly complex to work with Mr Trump’s hair,” Jacob Sempler, who was one of the people behind the site told The Local. Building the page was worth the effort though: was praised (or endorsed, if you like) by Spotify founder Daniel Ek. At the time of writing it has chalked up no less than 137,451,428 trumps.

If you haven’t already (or just want to get one last blast in for good measure), feel free to give it a try here. You won't regret it.

Hours of amusement. Photo: Animal

2. Rick Flag vs Donald Trump

One of Sweden’s most outspoken anti-Trump figures is also one of the most visible Swedes of the moment. Actor Joel Kinnaman recently played Rick Flag, one of the lead roles in US blockbuster Suicide Squad, while he is also a key character in Netflix epic House of Cards, and the 36-year-old is no fan of the Republican presidential candidate, to make an understatement.

In August, Kinnaman, who is a US Passport holder thanks to his American dad, told Swedish magazine King: “If Trump wins we’re packing our bags and moving home to Sweden, that’s for sure.”

In case anyone didn’t get the message, a month later the actor elaborated in an interview with newspaper Dagens Nyheter, where he accused Trump of spreading conspiracy theories and being openly racist. To top it off, he regularly takes shots at the businessman on his Twitter feed, perhaps most notably in the below example:

Stop holding back and tell us what you really think, Joel.

3. Sweden’s lonely Donald Trump voter

Trying to find a needle in a haystack may be a tough task, but trust us, trying to find a Trump voter in Sweden is far more difficult. Back in September, The Local interviewed a number of American expats in Sweden about their opinions on today’s election, and while we found Democrats, independents, and Republicans, none said they were going to vote for Trump.

It seemed there really were no Trump voters on Swedish soil (or at least none willing to admit it), until last month we finally managed to get in touch with one member of the rare breed. The interview that followed provided a fascinating insight into what it's like being a lonely Trump voter in rural Sweden.

It's hard enough to find another person in some parts of Dalarna, let alone a Trump voter. Photo: Rogelio V Solis/AP

4. Count Donald and Donald Troll hit the streets of Stockholm

Anyone walking around Sweden’s capital city lately may have noticed some pretty unique presidential election-themed artwork popping up around the place. If you spotted Trump as a troll or as Dracula, then you’ve stumbled across some of the contributions to “Pens For Freedom”, an initiative encouraging Stockholmers to draw the Republican candidate then post it on Instagram.

The contributions have ranged from political satire to outright silly, and can be viewed on the Pens For Freedom Instagram page. One of The Local’s editors even spotted a few just outside our office in southern Stockholm.


A new anti-#DonaldTrump exhibition popped up on the streets of #Stockholm today. #pensforfreedom @pensforfreedom

A photo posted by The Local (@thelocalsweden) on Nov 3, 2016 at 8:34am PDT

5. The Great Trump Escape

The last silly Swedish story to be spawned from the US election came courtesy of advertising agency Round & Round, who launched their “The Great Trump Escape” campaign a few days ago.

In a nutshell, it offers any Americans who want to flee their home nation should Trump come out victorious the chance to register their portfolios with the company, but the catch is that they will only be considered for a job if the New Yorker wins the presidential race.

Nahir Aslan, one of the people behind the initiative, told The Local on Monday that Round & Round would rather not have to open the files they have received, and indeed, that point is made pretty clear by the last line of the Great Trump Escape website, which states:

“Honestly, we really hope it won’t come down to all that. Get your shit together, America.”

It’s going to be a nervy day for those folks (and plenty of others). 

READ ALSO: Six way Donald Trump is nothing like Adolf Hitler


Norwegian to slash staff by half in wake of Trump travel ban

Norwegian Air Shuttle said on Thursday it would temporarily lay off up to half its staff, following the US travel ban and the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Norwegian to slash staff by half in wake of Trump travel ban
A Boeing 737 33-S operated by Norwegian landing at Oslo's Gardermoen Airport. Photo: Erlend Aas/ NTB Scanpix/AFP
“The new restrictions imposed further pressure on an already difficult situation,” Jacob Schram, CEO of Norwegian, said in a statement, referring to the 30-day travel ban from Europe to the US introduced by US president Donald Trump.
“Due to the extraordinary market situation as a result of the coronavirus… we must look at all possible measures to reduce costs,” the company said in a statement.
“This unfortunately also includes temporary lay-offs of up to 50 percent of our employees and the number may increase,” it added, confirming the staff would be let go.
The low-cost carrier also said it was cancelling more than 4,000 flights, including 3,000 already announced on Tuesday.
“We do not rule out that others may follow,” airline spokesman Lasse Sandaker-Nielsen told AFP. “The situation is changing from minute to minute,” he told AFP.
According to the airline, about 40 percent of its long-haul fleet would be grounded as it was cancelling the majority of flights from European airports to the US.
The company said it would continue to operate flights between London — which is excluded from the travel ban — and the US, and hoped to re-route as many of its passengers as possible.
Norwegian, which has been in deficit for three years and is heavily indebted due to an ambitious expansion policy, especially in long-haul flights, has been plummeting on the Oslo Stock Exchange.
On Thursday, after the announcement by the US president, the share fell by 22 percent. The stock has fallen by over 80 percent in the last month.