Liberals (Sweden)

The Liberals (Swedish: Liberalerna, L), known as the Liberal People's Party (Swedish: Folkpartiet liberalerna) until 22 November 2015, is a liberal[15][16][needs update] political party in Sweden. The Liberals ideologically shows a variety of liberal tendencies, including social liberalism,[3] conservative liberalism,[5][6] and economic liberalism.[17][18] The party is a member of the Liberal International and Renew Europe.

The Liberals
LeaderJohan Pehrson
Party secretaryMaria Nilsson
Parliamentary Group LeaderMats Persson
Founded5 August 1934; 88 years ago (1934-08-05)
HeadquartersRiksgatan 2, Stockholm
Youth wingLiberal Youth of Sweden
Membership (2020) 12,179[1]
Social liberalism[3]
Classical liberalism[4]
Conservative liberalism[5][6]
European federalism[7]
Political positionCentre-right[8][9][10]
European affiliationAlliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe
International affiliationLiberal International
European Parliament groupRenew Europe
Nordic affiliationCentre Group
ColoursBlue and white
20 / 349
European Parliament[12]
1 / 21
County councils[13]
94 / 1,696
Municipal councils[14]
689 / 12,700

Historically the party was positioned in the centre of the Swedish political landscape, willing to cooperate with both the political left and the right. It has since the leaderships of Lars Leijonborg and Jan Björklund in the 2000s positioned itself more towards the right.[8][19][20] It was a part of the Alliance centre-right coalition government led by Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt from 2006 to 2014. The party's policies include action toward a free market economy and pushing for Sweden to join NATO and the Eurozone, as well as investing in nuclear power;[21] it also focuses on gender equality, the school system and quality education.[8][19]

In February 2019, following the conclusion of government negotiations, Jan Björklund announced his intention to step down from the leadership position after 11 years at the helm of the Liberals. He was succeeded by Nyamko Sabuni in June 2019.[22] After the 2021 Swedish government crisis, the party withdrew their support for Social Democratic Prime Minister Stefan Löfven, and is now promoting a right-wing government together with the Moderate Party and the Christian Democrats, with support from the Sweden Democrats, with Ulf Kristersson as their Prime Minister candidate. In an interview with Dagens Nyheter in February 2022, Sabuni stated that the Sweden Democrats will "play an important role in an eventual right-wing government" and that she would not be hesitant to work and collaborate with them, stating that there is a possibility of Liberals supporting a Moderate-Christian Democrats-Sweden Democrats government, even if the Liberals are not included in the government.[23] Since the decision to collaborate with the Sweden Democrats, the party has adopted more right-wing populist policy, such as a more restrictive migration policy, easier withdrawal of citizenship for immigrants, and strong criticism of Muslim schools.[24][25][26]

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