More Election Observations
Not surprisingly, the nationalist anti-immigration party Sverigedemokraterna ( the Sweden Democrats) got the most votes, 162463 or 2.93%, more than doubling their 2002 result of 1.44%. Especially since they by getting over the 2.5% threshold for government financial support are far financially stronger than before, it seems nearly inevitable that they will make it all the way by 2010, and get over the 4% threshold for receiving seats in the Swedish parliament. The only way to stop this would be to take effective measures to improve integration, such as liberalizing the labor market and lowering taxation of labor to improve immigrant job opportunities and to crack down more effictively on immigrant gangs. As the basis of their support is the failed integration policies of the Social Democrats, this could be the one thing that could prevent them from getting over the 4% threshold in 2010. But I seriously doubt that the new centre-right government will dare do take measures radical enough to significantly improve integration. They will then only have themselves to blame when the Sweden Democrats likely enter the Swedish parliament in 2010.
Feminist Initative became the second biggest party outside of the parliament with 37954 votes or 0.68% of the total. But this was still a lot less than one could have expected given the positive media attention they received and given the fact that their de facto (FI are so radically egalitarian that they don't even have a formal leader, but everyone knows that Schyman is in practice leader) leader, Gudrun Schyman is still fairly popular and well-known among left-wing voters.
The moderately free market June List came in fifth with 26072 or 0.47% of the total votes. Their mistake was to focus on the issue of stopping the EU constitution, even though that have been dead ever since last year's referendums in France and Holland and even though there already exist parties in the Swedish parliament who wants to stop it.
The one pure libertarian party, Klassiskt Liberala Partiet, made a disastrous election with only 202 votes, or 0.004%. Their problem was first of all that none of their leaders were particularly well-known even within libertarian groups, and secondly that most libertarians seemed more focused on getting rid of the Social Democrats than on supporting the most principled party, especially since the Centre Party had a fairly radical free market advocate in Fredrik Federlay. Moreover, most libertarians who refused to support the centre-right parties seems to have chosen not to vote at all. As most libertarians are likely to be disappointed with the new centre-right government, the KLP is likely to be able to get far more votes in 2010, particularly if they can get more well-known leaders.
Because disappointed they will be, mark my words. I see within the Swedish libertarian blogosphere that all too many seem to regard this election as a dramatic turn for the better. Johnny Munkhammar in particular seems greatly over-optimistic about the extent of increased freedom the new government will bring. Others such as Johan Norberg, have already started to be disappointed as Maud Olofsson, the leader of the centre-right party that appeared most libertarian, the Centre Party and which Norberg therefore voted for, have demanded a strict gender quota for the new government. Fredrik Reinfeldt, being the unprincipled "flip-flopper" that he is, will no doubt cave in to that sexist demand.
At best, the new government will only mean a slight increase in freedom. Reinfeldt will not dare go any further lest he offend the centrist voters that voted him into office. So, expect libertarians to continue to be disappointed. For freedom to be advanced in Sweden, we must intensify our efforts to spread the message of freedom. If popular sentiment moves in a libertarian direction, then government policy will also move. And with a pure power politician like Fredrik Reinfeldt in power, this will be more true than ever, as Reinfeldt will always adapt his views to the views of the median voter. If free market advocates manage to change public opinion in a free market direction, then Reinfeldt will automatically change his views.