Norway 2009

Norway voted to renew its 169-seat unicameral legislature on September 14. I posted an overview of the main players, the pre-electoral situation and some notes on Norwegian electoral geography in preview post on September 5.

Labour 35.4% (+2.7%) winning 64 seats (+3)
Progress 22.9% (+0.9%) winning 41 seats (+3)
Conservative 17.2% (+3.1%) winning 30 seats (+7)
Socialist Left 6.2% (-2.6%) winning 11 seats (-4)
Centre 6.2% (-0.3%) winning 11 seats (±0)
Christian Democratic 5.5% (-1.2%) winning 10 seats (-1)
Liberal 3.9% (-2.1%) winning 2 seats (-8)
Red Electoral Alliance 1.4% (+0.1) winning 0 seats (±0)
Others 1.3% (-0.4%) winning 0 seats (±0)

Ap+SV+SP Majority (Red-Green): 86 seats

The government polled slightly better than expected, despite the expected Socialist Left thumping, and the Red-Green coalition option kept its majority, and it’s extremely likely that this coalition option will continue to govern Norway. The other surprise, kind of, was the little electoral progress of Progress, which did worse than expected, primarily to the benefit of the Conservative Party, which had a good night after their icy shower in 2005.

The Liberals fell below the 4% threshold and were reduced to 2 seats – these seats are two of the 150 seats allocated by county (constituency) based on the county results (the Liberal MPs come from Oslo and Akershus). There are 19 seats, one per county, allocated by on the national vote, and that’s where the 4% stuff comes in.

Norway 2009-2

Very little changes, you’ll notice, from the 2005 coalitions map, except for the county of Buskerud, quite a swing county polarized, it appears, between some older industrial areas and the wealthier suburbs of Oslo. The county of Telemark remains surrounded by blue counties.

In terms of electoral geography by party, both the NRK and TV2 have great interactive maps showing the strength of the various parties by county and municipality. On a quick analysis, the right is strong in two general areas: the Nynorsk-speaking, rural, conservative southern coast and in Oslo and its suburbia. Oslo is more of a yuppie city, making it a top city for various movements: Red, SV, Liberals, but also the Conservatives, who in Norway have a much more urban profile than North American conservatives. The wealthier suburbs of Oslo are also strongly right-leaning.

For fun, a look at each party’s best municipality, courtesy of the great NRK:

Labour: Årdal (70.2%) – industrial city dominated by the aluminum industry. Hasvik, a isolated fishing island in the far north was Labour’s second best, with a distant 57.3% of the vote for the party there.
Progress: Farsund (39.8%) – a coastal municipality in very conservative Vest-Agder, with, it seems, a growing tourist industry. Not extremely affluent, though. Karmøy, a rural coastal village in the Rogaland, part of the Bible Belt, is a close second at 36.7%.
Conservative: Bærum (35.4%) – very affluent (if not the most affluent in Norway) and posh suburb of Oslo.
Socialist Left: Nesseby (16.9%) – Sami town in Finnmark, Norway’s northernmost county. It’s also close to a now-closed iron ore mine.
Centre: Gloppen (46.8%) – rural municipality in the Fjords.
Christian Democrats: Audnedal (31.7%) – rural municipality in conservative Vest-Agder, Norway’s Bible Belt.
Liberal: Ulvik (15%) – tourist town deep in the Fjords.
Red: Vågsøy (4.7%) – tourist and also major fishing town in the Fjords, town won by Progress. Oslo itself, at 4%, is a close second.

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Posted on September 16, 2009, in Norway. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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