The centre-right Alliance for Sweden, led by Fredrik Reinfeldt (left), won a narrow victory in the general election on 17 September 2006, defeating Prime Minister Goran Persson’s Social Democrats, who had been in power since 1994. After conceding defeat, Persson, head of the government since 1996, declared that he would stand down as party leader in March 2007.
Reinfeldt’s group of four right-leaning parties won 178 of the 349 seats, with 48.1% of the vote, compared with 46.2% for the grouping of Social Democrats and their allies, the Left and Greens.
Despite the change of government, a political upheaval is unlikely. The Moderate Party promised the electorate that the renowned ‘social model’ would be protected, and pledged that tax cuts would be moderate, and far less than those offered in 2002, when the party was punished at the ballot box for appearing to threaten the generous welfare system.
The new government is to take power formally on 5 October, and Reinfeldt will present his government’s programme and cabinet to parliament the following day.
18 September 2006