2013 Norwegian parliamentary election
A parliamentary election was held in Norway on 8 and 9 September 2013 to elect all 169 members of the unicameral Norwegian Parliament. The centre-right coalition obtained 96 seats, while the incumbent red–green coalition government obtained 72 seats and the Green Party obtained one. The Labour Party won the largest share (30.8%) of the votes cast, with the Conservatives coming second (26.8%), after increasing its share by 9.6 percentage points.
All 169 seats in the Norwegian Parliament
85 seats were needed for a majority
Elections in Norway are held on a Monday in September, usually the second or third Monday, as determined by the king-in-council (i.e. the government). In 2013, the election was held on the second Monday. Each municipality was permitted to open some or all of its polling stations on the day before the nationwide election day. This option was exercised by 206 of the 428 municipalities. The main period for early voting was 12 August to 6 September, it was also possible to make an even earlier vote after 1 July by contacting the municipal government.
The election was the fourth for incumbent Prime Minister of Norway Jens Stoltenberg, whose party was previously defeated in the 2001 parliamentary election, but who won both the 2005 parliamentary election and the 2009 parliamentary election (though in the latter election, the opposition narrowly received more votes than the coalition) leading the red–green coalition. Had he been re-elected, Stoltenberg would have been the first prime minister in Norway to be elected for three consecutive terms.
The election ended with a victory for the four opposition right-of-center parties, which won a total of 96 seats out of 169 (85 needed for a majority). The biggest gain was by the Conservative Party, which took 26.8% of the vote, while the governing red–green coalition lost ground; following convention, Stoltenberg's government resigned and handed over power in October. The Labour Party, however, remained the largest party in parliament with 30.8% of the popular vote. The Progress Party also lost ground, but nevertheless became a participant in the new government.
Among the smaller parties, the centrist Liberal Party and Christian Democrats emerged holding the balance of power. Both had campaigned for a change in government. On 30 September the two parties announced that they would support a minority coalition of the Conservative and Progress parties, but they would not participate in the cabinet themselves. The two smaller members of the red–green coalition both lost ground. The Centre Party lost only one seat and maintained a sizable parliamentary delegation, while the Socialist Left Party only narrowly reached the election threshold of 4%. The Green Party, which had not declared support for either bloc, received its first ever member of parliament with a single seat from Oslo.