the trap of the alliance with the extreme right

LHas the concept of a model Sweden of Scandinavian democracy tempered to boredom survived? The outcome of the legislative elections, which were held there on September 11, is apparently without appeal. Admittedly, the ballot was very close: only three seats separate the right-wing parliamentary coalition which won from that of the left, and the solidity of the new majority is already subject to questioning. It prevents. For the first time in the history of this country, power will be exercised by a bloc extended to the radical right, embodied by the party of the Democrats of Sweden, a formation born of an openly neo-Nazi party.

In the space of twelve years, this virulently anti-immigration party has quadrupled its representation, rising from 5.7% to 20.6% of the vote. It thus became Sweden's second political force. Far behind the Social Democratic Party of the outgoing Prime Minister (30.4%), Magdalena Andersson, who will therefore have remained in power for less than a year, but ahead of the main Conservative Party, which has swapped for these elections the strategy of the sanitary cordon against that of the step. The latter was considered the only possible way, according to its leader, Ulf Kristersson, to gain power.

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The results of this opportunistic calculation therefore raise questions about its relevance. By completing the integration of this hard right into the Swedish political game, the conservatives have powerfully helped its leader, Jimmie Akesson, in his enterprise of demonization. Immigration and insecurity, his favorite themes, have thus dominated the legislative campaign at the expense of other more fundamental ones such as the fight against climate change. The Social Democrats, who hardened their positions vis-à-vis migrants well before these elections, are also not impervious to it.

A far from isolated example

The electoral benefit that the Democrats of Sweden have derived from the renunciation of the moderate right now places them at the heart of the new parliamentary coalition, without which Ulf Kristersson will not be able to govern. Even if they do not take part in the executive, they will certainly not hesitate to monetize their support dearly, by claiming important positions in Parliament, or by putting all their weight on the government contract of the new team. The Conservatives wanted to make it an auxiliary force, they are now obliged to do so.

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The Swedish example of trivialization of the most radical right is far from isolated, starting in this part of Europe. Finland and Denmark have indeed paved the way, each time with a severe tightening of the screws on migration policy, including on the part of social democratic governments.

In Italy, another coalition extended to other far-right formations, including Fratelli d'Italia, the latest avatar of the Movimento sociale italiano, of fascist descent, will attempt on September 25 to conquer power, for the benefit of the leader of the latter, Giorgia Meloni. She defends positions close to the Democrats of Sweden. The two parties also sit in the same group in the European Parliament, unlike the elected members of the French National Rally.

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Significant differences continue to separate these families from the European populist or national conservative right, notably on NATO and Russia, but their steady advance is invariably at the expense of conservative parties. Far from being the lifeline they imagine, the hand extended to the radical right carries with it, for them, an existential threat.

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