The conservative coalition led by Prime Minister Erna Solberg will remain in power after the parliamentary elections in Norway. This is the second time in 30 years that a conservative government has been re-elected in Norway. Scandinavian media examine the weaknesses of the political parties and in particular those of the defeated social democrats.
Social democrats have nothing to celebrate
Once again the Conservatives got the better of the social democrats, Turun Sanomat concludes:
“The Conservative Party Höyre will again appoint the head of government. … The rise in the employment rate as well as the economic revival realized through the Oil Fund have kept the Conservatives in power. … The result of the parliamentary election in Norway underpins the current right-wing trend in Europe. The social democrats have pretty much suffered one defeat after another in the elections of the last few years. The next test will be the German parliamentary elections on 24 September. If the predictions prove right the social democrats won't have any reason to celebrate after that election either. And according the polls a continuation of the social democratic government in Sweden is also hanging in the balance.”
All the parties have emerged weakened from the Norwegian election campaign, Upsala Nya Tidning concludes:
“The Labour Party has suffered a major defeat. It made the strategic mistake of trying to paint a picture of a Norway in crisis that didn't ring true with the voters. After all the economy is doing well and unemployment is declining. These strategic mistakes were compounded by tactical mistakes. [The leading candidate of the Labour Party] Gahr Störe tried to lure voters from the centre and ended up losing voters to the Socialist Left Party. And the Norwegian Centre Party, which is aligned with the Red-Green parties, was able to gain votes with its opposition to the EU (even though Norway is not an EU member), to centralisation and to the merging of county municipalities. Erna Soleberg will continue to govern the country. She is weakened but the opposition is even weaker.”