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The Sweden Democrats first entered parliament in 2014, having exceeded the minimum threshold of 4% of the national vote. Though holding a mere 49 of 246 seats, itself more than a twofold increase from the previous election, the victory represented the far-right’s penetration into the political mainstream. Emboldened by widespread frustration about the refugee crisis, the Sweden Democrats look set to maintain their hold on domestic politics in the September 9th general election. In an article for Politico, writer Stephen Brown writes about the party’s rise:

In some respects, the far-right Sweden Democrats have already won September’s election.

It’s not just their spectacular rise in opinion polls, which has politicians no longer just speculating whether they’ll overtake the conservative Moderates to become the second-biggest party but whether they could even knock the Social Democrats off of the No. 1 perch they’ve held since 1917.

It’s also that, even in the unlikely event that the Sweden Democrats underperform in the general election on September 9, the far right will have succeeded in dictating the style and substance of a fear-filled campaign, where migration and violent crime have risen to the fore.

“Migration, and law and order has never been in the focus of any election in Sweden, ever,” said Gunnar Strömmer, who as party secretary of the Moderates is running the conservative party’s campaign.

Read the full article here.

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