Sweden called its first snap election for more than half a century in March after a far-right party helped defeat the center-left minority government’s first budget in parliament on Wednesday.
Formed after a fractured September election that handed the anti-immigration Sweden Democrats the balance of power, Prime Minister Stefan Lofven’s Social Democrat-Green coalition has been widely viewed as Sweden’s weakest government in decades.
Shunned by mainstream parties, the Sweden Democrats have threatened to make Sweden effectively ungovernable unless the country adopts tough immigration policies like those of nearby Denmark, including a 90 percent cut in asylum seeker numbers.
Lofven blamed the four center-right parties which made up the previous, long-running Alliance government for giving the Sweden Democrats, who won 13 percent of the vote in September, an effective veto.
“They are allowing the Sweden Democrats to dictate the terms of Swedish politics,” Lofven said.
Fresh elections would “let voters make a choice in the face of this new political landscape,” he added.
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