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Thursday, December 9, 2021

Magdalena Andersson resigns just hours after being voted Sweden’s first female prime minister

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Just seven-and-a-half hours after being voted in as Sweden’s first female prime minister, Magdalena Andersson has resigned.

It comes after her budget was defeated and her Green allies left the government.

The budget proposal was rejected in favour of one presented by the opposition that includes the right-wing populist Sweden Democrats.

Sweden’s third-largest party is rooted in a neo-Nazi movement. The vote was 154-143 in favour of the opposition’s budget proposal.

Andersson, leader of the Social Democratic Party, decided it was best to step down from the post after she made history by becoming the first woman to lead the country.

“There is a constitutional practice where a coalition government resigns when a party leaves it. I don’t want to lead a government whose legitimacy is being called into question,” she said at a press conference, where she said she hoped to be re-elected in a subsequent vote.

Andersson, who was finance minister before briefly becoming prime minister, informed parliamentary speaker Andreas Norlen that she is still interested in leading a Social Democratic one-party government.

Norlen, the speaker of Sweden’s 349-seat parliament, said he will contact Sweden’s eight party leaders ”to discuss the situation.”

On Thursday, he will announce the road ahead.

Even though the Green Party pulled its support for her government, it said it is prepared to stand behind Andersson in a new vote to tap a prime minister.

But the Greens said it was in the best interests of the party to pull support for her after the budget defeat in parliament.

“We have a united party behind us saying we can not sit in a government that implements a policy (the Sweden Democrats) negotiated. We must look our voters in the eye and feel pride,” said Marta Stenevi, Green Party spokesperson as the party chose to resign from the government.

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