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Sweden Chose Its First Female Prime Minister. She Lasted Less Than a Day.

Sweden Chose Its First Female Prime Minister. She Lasted Less Than a Day.
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Sweden Chose Its First Female Prime Minister. She Lasted Less Than a Day.

Sweden Chose Its First Female Prime Minister. She Lasted Less Than a Day.

When Social Democratic Party leader Magdalena Anderson became the country’s first female prime minister, a new era seemed to have begun in Sweden on Wednesday.

But her historic tenure was less than a day.

She resigned on Thursday after suffering a crushing defeat in Parliament’s budget. She had just formed a two-party minority government with the Green Party. But after their budget was rejected by the opposition’s one-sided party, which included the far-right Sweden Democrats, the Green Party left the coalition in desperation and left Ms. Anderson’s center-left party without a partner.

“According to constitutional practice, a coalition government must resign if one party leaves the government,” Ms Anderson said in a statement shared on her Facebook page. “For me, it’s about respect, but I don’t want to lead a government where its legitimacy could be called into question.” She further stated that she had met with the speaker and asked him to remove her from her new post.

Ms Anderson’s resignation plunged Sweden into political uncertainty. The country’s political landscape was already gripped by fragile coalition governments and a vote of no confidence in former Prime Minister Stephen Lofven in June. Ms. Anderson later became the leader of the Social Democrats after Mr. Lofven.

Sweden at one time accepted more refugees per capita than any other European nation. But her progressive image has been slowly eroded by far-right populist sentiments led by the Sweden Democrats. The political spectrum has turned right, with anti-immigrant and anti-European voices.

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Per Boland, a spokesman for the Green Party, said his group disappointed the government because parliament had approved a state budget negotiated by the opposition, which included a right-wing extremist party.

Until a new government is elected, the current government will continue in the interim. Ms Anderson, who has been Sweden’s finance minister since 2014, has said she is ready to serve as prime minister, but only in a one-party government.

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