Sweden’s elections results delayed
Sweden’s election authority delayed the announcement of preliminary election results as it continued counting votes, with a coalition of right-wing parties narrowly leading the governing center-left bloc early this morning.
With 94 percent of votes in electoral districts counted, officials said they had yet to count early mail-in votes and overseas ballots.
Though the Social Democrats were the party with the most votes, the far-right, anti-immigration Sweden Democrats were in second place for the first time, just ahead of the conservative Moderate Party. Some early exit polling anticipated a victory for the center-left bloc led by the Social Democrats.
The election concludes an unusually antagonistic campaign season characterized by the growing popularity of the far-right Sweden Democrats, once a fringe party, and their effect on the neck-and-neck competition for voters between the right-wing and center-left blocs.
During the race, lawmakers focused on concerns about health care, energy prices and rising crime.
“This has been a very toxic campaign,” said Jonas Hinnfors of the University of Gothenburg, adding that the tightness of the race had led to unusually combative debates.