Sweden unsettled after the election

Tensions have been smouldering in Sweden since the elections: the leader of the Christian Democrats, Ebba Busch Thor, has said she is willing to accept the support of the right-wing populist Sweden Democrats which would allow her to form a governing majority. At the same time a document circulating in the government administration calls on civil servants to boycott a government which includes the Sweden Democrats. Swedish journalists voice their concern.

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Göteborgs-Posten (SE) /

Highhanded bureaucrats undermining democracy

The document calls on those who work for a government which includes the Sweden Democrats to sabotage the ruling power, pointing to a weakening of the 'basic values of the chancellorship'. Göteborgs-Posten is alarmed:

“The document shows clearly how the idea of basic values in democracy is being eroded. ... That paves the way for political activism at the civil-servant level. The result: the bureaucracy is creating an option that allows it to override the will of the people and their representatives. Such an ideology based on basic values is foreign to a constitutional democracy. ... It's a dangerous development. Those who refuse to tolerate a change in government are already starting to think in terms of authoritarianism. In a democratic society you can change the government without autocratic bureaucrats undermining the people's will.”

Aftonbladet (SE) /

Don't sign a pact with the devil

Aftonbladet by contrast is worried by the prospect of the conservative Alliance sacrificing its promises for the sake of political ambition:

“It's funny how fast the pendulum can swing. Before the elections Ebba Busch Thor was very clear on her 'no' to any form of cooperation with the Sweden Democrats. Then voters went to the polls and the red-green bloc is now just a fraction ahead of the conservative Alliance. ... Power seems within reach for the Alliance parties. The question is: will they take the path that leads straight into darkness?”