Denmark’s Rasmussen to form minority government

Rasmussen’s Liberals to form minority cabinet with 34 seats in Danish parliament

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

After meeting with anti-immigrant Danish People’s party (DPP) politicians on Friday, leader of the center-right Venstre party Lars Lokke Rasmussen announced that he will form a minority government rather than continue to try to form a coalition.

The attempt to form a coalition with other parties failed, with DPP refusing to participate in any form of government with Venstre.

Despite the victory of the centre-right bloc, the Liberals had their worst election in a quarter of a century and a government formed only by themselves would give them just 34 seats out of the 179 in parliament.

Speaking to the press after meeting with the DPP, Rasmussen said on Friday that "my feeling is that after this evening's discussions, it would be possible to form a Venstre government under my authority, which will receive the support of parliament."

“I will form a government with the Liberal Party under my leadership. It will be a government that needs to cooperate and it will need to listen to its parliamentary support,” Rasmussen said in a TV2 live broadcast.

“This is not just be a minority government but a small government. So if it needs to be stable and to be able to maneuver, it will have to listen to others.”

Rasmussen added that he is to met head of state Queen Margrethe II on Sunday to announce his decision.

The DPP set four main conditions to form a ruling coalition with Venstre. According to these conditions, Venstre had to adopt a eurosceptic approach towards the EU, strengthen border controls, restrict immigration policy and raise public sector spending.

Rasmussen’s Liberals party won fewer votes than the DPP, which secured 21 percent of the votes and became the second biggest political group in the parliament after the Social Democrats led by the Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt.

Thorning-Schmidt’s bloc got 89 seats in total, one short of a majority, even though the Social Democrats improved their vote slightly and remained the country’s largest party. She quit as party leader after the votes were count.

The Venstre minority government would have only 34 deputies out of the 179 in parliament.

The only other minority government that Denmark has had was in 1973 with 22 seats in parliament and lasted for only 14 months.

This would leave Denmark in an unusual situation: Only one government, in 1973, had a smaller support base in parliament at 22 seats. That cabinet lasted 14 months.

TRTWorld and agencies