Magdalena Anderson: Sweden's first female Prime Minister returns to power- for second time in a week

Sweden Prime Minister: Sweden elected the first female Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson for the second time in a week. Andersson is a leader of the Social Democrats and she was confident that she will return to power after submitting her resignation. 

Created On: Nov 24, 2021 17:23 ISTModified On: Dec 2, 2021 14:15 IST
Sweden PM Magdalena Andersson
Sweden PM Magdalena Andersson

Sweden Prime Minister news: Magdalena Andersson, the first female Prime Minister of Sweden returned to power in a week on November 29, 2021, after she submitted her resignation on November 24. She had become the first female PM of Sweden only for a few hours before resigning due to a budget defeat that made a coalition partner quit.

However, Magdalena Andersson was again elected in a 101-173 vote with 75 abstentions. The 349-seat Riksdag elected Andersson as a Prime Minister of Sweden for the second time. Andersson is a leader of the Social Democrats and she was confident that she will return to power. 

Sweden’s Parliament, in a first,  on November 24, 2021, had elected Magdalena Andersson, Social Democratic Party leader and Finance Minister, as the first female Prime Minister of Sweden. The decision came after Andersson clinched a last-minute deal securing the key support.

Why did the Swedish Prime Minister resign?

The Green Party of Sweden had decided to quit after the Parliament rejected the coalition's budget bill. Andersson had previously received the support of the Social Democrats’ coalition partner the Green Party, as well as the Centre Party.

Andersson was facing setbacks even before her election on November 24. The announcement was made by the Centre Party that while it will not oppose Andersson in the vote for PM, it will withdraw its support for the government’s budget to be voted later on November 24, because of the concessions made to the Left.

It meant that Magdalena Andersson had to govern with a budget presented by the opposition conservative Moderates, far-right Sweden Democrats, and Christian Democrats.

The 54-years-old Magdalena Andersson, who took over as the leader of the Social Democrats earlier in November 2021, had reached a deal with the Left Party late on November 23, 2021, to raise the pensions in exchange for its backing in the next day vote.

How Magdalena Andersson became first female PM of Sweden, again?

Even though Andersson's resignation came within 12 hours of assuming the duties of PM, her chances of being reappointed as the Prime Minister of Sweden were still good. 

The Green party had assured that it will support her in any new confirmation vote in the Parliament, while the Centre Party has promised to abstain which means the same as backing her candidacy.

The Left Party of Sweden had already said that it will back her. While these parties were unable to agree on a budget, they all were united on the goal of keeping the Sweden Democrats, an anti-immigration, populist party, from having a role in the Government.

The opposition Christian Democrats and Moderates are backed by the Sweden Democrats, however, they cannot demand a majority in the Parliament.

Female Prime Ministers of Nordic countries

All the Nordic countries have seen women lead their governments.

Country

Women Prime Ministers of Nordic countries

Sweden

PM Magdalena Andersson

Norway

Former PM Erna Solberg

Denmark

PM Mette Frederiksen

Finland

PM Sanna Marin

Iceland

PM Katrín Jakobsdóttir

Background

Magdalena Andersson was to succeed the outgoing PM Stefan Lofven after a total of 117 members of Parliament voted for Andersson. 57 members abstained from voting while 174 voted against and one was absent.

Under Sweden’s electoral system, a prime ministerial candidate of the country does not need the support of a majority in the Parliament, the candidate just needs to not have a majority- or 175 votes- against them.

The former Prime Minister of Sweden and leader of the Social Democratic Party Stefan Lofven had resigned on November 10, 2021, after seven years as the Prime Minister. The move was widely expected as it also aimed at giving his successor time to prepare for September 2022 general elections in Sweden.

Despite being a country that had long championed gender equality, Sweden has never had a woman as Prime Minister.

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