Swedish Opposition Leader to Get First Attempt to Replace Ousted PM

The speaker of Sweden’s parliament asked the main opponent of the ousted Prime Minister Stefan Lofven to attempt forming a new government.

Speaker Andreas Norlen said Moderate Leader Ulf Kristersson will get until Friday to find out whether he has enough support in parliament to replace Lofven’s caretaker administration. The announcement is the first step in the speaker’s efforts to facilitate a way out of the political paralysis that has gripped Sweden.

The biggest Nordic country quickly descended into a political crisis after a clash over relaxing rent regulation last week led parties across the political spectrum to unite against Lofven.

The speaker has now started exploring who could take the reins and form a government with some semblance of stability, but the mathematics of a divided Parliament is posing severe challenges to any contender. Any successful candidate will need to avoid having a majority oppose them to make the cut.

With a deeply divided parliament, and uncertainty about how individual members will vote, Kristersson’s prospects are debatable, and the possibility of a snap election remains. Kristersson, who’s also willing to cooperate with anti-immigration Sweden Democrats, is backed by parties representing slightly less than the 175 votes needed for a majority. To avoid losing a vote, he would need lawmakers in the opposing camp to abstain.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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