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Election Analysis: The Left Party Fails to Shift the Debate to the Economy – The Left Party

The Left Party Party Council has now finished its electoral analysis. The difficulty of moving the political agenda as one party is highlighted as an important factor. The analysis also addresses, among other things, how tactical votes and the red-green split negatively affected the outcome.

The work on election analysis was led by the party’s deputy secretary, Hanna Geiden.

– We retreated in the parliamentary elections, and that was disappointing. It is a piecemeal picture because we have progressed simultaneously in regions and municipalities. But above all, we failed in what was the ultimate goal of our electoral strategy, namely, a red-green government and the increased influence it gave, says Hanna Geideen.

– We see that it was a special election movement that was very much about SD and the issues they focus on, even between parties on our side. Winners in that SD was not unexpectedly. Instead, our electoral strategy has been to shift the debate to economic policy, reforms, and investments for equality and jobs. We didn’t succeed in that. One conclusion is that we need to work to include more movements in it, especially if other parties on our side don’t contribute.

The electoral strategy of the Left Party was based on the strategy document adopted by the members at the 2020 congress. There, the goals were set in the ten-year period, for growth among youth and workers and division into new voter groups. In the election strategy, the focus was on retaining young progressive voters and reaching out to new voters in industrial/industrial areas and millionaire programs.

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We got good results in several million program areas, but we were way off target in other target groups. We knew that breaking into new groups of voters required long-term work and that it was not something that was done in just one election. But we need to develop this work further in order to reflect the political development in Sweden. Hanna Geideen argues that the left in its broadest sense needs to grow in order for change to become possible.

Compared to the 2018 elections, the Left Party has primarily lost its voters to the Social Democrats and secondly to the Green Party. Environmental factors that were pointed out in the election analysis include the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which would likely cause many voters to fall behind the ruling party, as well as the fact that the Green Party was so close to the barrier and a successful support vote campaign for them close to the election. The party of the left is the party, in absolute terms, where the most tactically sympathetic chose to vote for another party in the parliamentary elections. The analysis also highlights the need for better cohesion internally and that the party council needs to do more stabilization work so that the whole party can implement the established policy.

There is no getting around the fact that the issue of government was important to the electorate. The Center Party had a dismissive attitude towards the Left Party, although we needed each other for the majority. The Social Democrats did nothing to keep our side together, on the contrary. The divided image was fomented on the right side, which emerged as an alternative to united government. The uncertainty may have benefited the Social Democrats at the expense of the Left Party, while in the bigger picture it became an advantage for the Blues and Browns against the Red Greens, says Hanna Geideen.

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An analysis of the Left Party elections can be read here (pdf).