Publication Soziale Bewegungen / Organisierung Parliamentary successes – organisational crisis. The experiences of the Swedish Left Party





June 2003

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1. Preface

The 1990s were, from a certain point of view, among the most successful decades of the history of the Left Party. The former CP of Sweden, during the years 1990-93, initiated a radical course of political renewal. Despite growing resistance from the rows of the membership and not last the youth organisation towards the end of the decade, the parliamentary election results could be continually improved. In 1998, the Left Party obtained 12% of the votes in the Reichstag elections, its election result of all times and thus became the third-largest party in the Stockholm Reichstag.

The election year 1998 also marked a political turning point in the history of the Left Party, since for the first time, it was possible to agree upon a long-term and contractually agreed collaboration with the social-democratic minority government of prime minister Göran Persson and the Greens. Out of the former “permanent opposition party”, there thus became a party, which for 5 years now is involved in a limited governmental collaboration. In the meantime, the electoral Reichstag result of the Left Party, to be sure, has sunk to 8.3% of the votes, this result, however, still lies considerably over the traditional vote share of the party formerly oriented towards Eurocommunism, finds itself in comfortable distance of the 4%-barrier to entry into the Reichstag and is, last but not least, according to the polls, on a stable level. ...

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