An anti-immigrant populist party laid claim to a major role in oil-rich Norway’s government for the first time on Tuesday after a centre-right alliance won a landslide general election victory to oust a Labour administration.
The Progress party, which once had among its members Anders Behring Breivik, who killed 77 people in 2011 in a gun and bomb attack targeting Labour, came third in Monday’s poll, giving it a kingmaker role in coalition The Conservatives, led by Erna Solberg, who won the most seats cannot form a majority government without Progress and may have to make concessions to the rightists on spending, taxes and immigration without alienating two smaller centrist parties.
“We will ensure a solid footprint in a new government and if we are going to have good solutions, all four parties must have a place, all must be visible,” Progress leader Siv Jensen said.
Progress wants to spend more of Norway’s oil wealth and curb immigration. Although it has toned down its rhetoric to court respectability, some still see it as too radical for government.