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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Swedish Victor Faces Tough Tenure

STOCKHOLM -- Swedish voters appear to have handed Social Democratic leader Ingvar Carlsson a poisoned chalice by giving him enough votes to be the next prime minister but not enough for a strong government, analysts say.


As horse trading began in earnest after Sunday's inconclusive election, Carlsson -- deprived of a parliamentary majority by just 13 seats -- gave the first hints that he might seek to form a minority government.


Speaking of an ill-defined "effective government of cooperation," Carlsson hinted strongly he would not seek a permanent coalition to guide him through the next four years, but would seek support in parliament from day to day.


In a leading article headlined, "Back to the Future," the respected left-of-center daily Dagens Nyheter said Swedish voters had returned a verdict that was packed full of contradictions.


One of the biggest anomalies was that Sweden's election campaign was dominated by businessmen and financiers telling Swedes that it was vital for private business to be encouraged.


"And the good citizens react by giving 57 percent of the vote to leftist parties," the daily said.


Sweden's complex electoral system of proportional representation has frequently given the country coalition governments, but elections rarely throw up such a finely balanced result as Sunday's.


Mats Svegfors, editor of the conservative daily Svenska Dagbladet, pointed out that Social Democrats have not had a majority in parliament since 1970, although they have governed for 15 of the past 24 years.