Media want new governmentMedia want new government
Norway's media coverage of the national elections reveals a desire for a 'red-green' government, says analyst Frank Aarebrot. Election expert Aarebrot, a professor at the Institute for Comparative Politics at the University of Bergen, argues that, with few exceptions, most of Norway's media leans to the left politically. "Most newspapers are what I would call politically correct. By politically correct in Norway today I mean slightly radical, urban and liberal, somewhere between the Thommessen wing in the Liberal Party, the Socialist Left Party and the Labor Party. Much of the tone in the major Norwegian media is there, both electronic and print," Aarebrot told NRK (Norwegian Broadcasting). Nearly 70 percent of journalists vote Labor (Ap), Socialist Left (SV) or Red Electoral Alliance (RV) according to a poll by Norsk Respons, and this is reflected in the press, Aarebrot said. Aarebrot also believes it is in the nature of journalism to demand change, and that a new government would give journalists more to write about.
Norway elects new government – following Denmark’s lead?
Norwegians go to the polls on Sep 12 and the question is whether voters will follow Denmark’s anti-immigration election lead and move Norway farther to the right. In February Danish voters re-elected Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen's minority government of Liberals and Conservatives, which is supported in the parliament by the anti-immigration Danish People's Party. In Norway Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik, appointed by King Harald V in 2001, leads a coalition of his Christian Democratic Party, the Conservative Party and the Liberal party. The far-right anti-immigration Progress Party is excluded from office, but in line with the growth of anti-immigration nationalist parties through much of Europe, it has grown to become the third-largest parting in the parliament. The opposition Labour Party led by former prime minister Jens Stoltenberg is leading in polls in the first part of 2005, but looks vulnerable. The Progress Party is showing a strong second place, and the Prime Minister’s coalition is likely to get the credit at election time if Norway’s economic growth stays on track. The Prime Minister voted No to Norway joining the European Union in the referendums of 1972 and 1994, but appears to be softening his opposition. There is expected to be a third referendum on EU membership after the election.