tisdag 31 oktober 2023

Vad vill Socialdemokraterna?

Jag ska inte skriva någon lång inledning om August Palms föredrag i Malmö år 1881. Det är länge sedan mina föreläsningar om arbetarrörelsens historia på Bommersvik (bland annat för några i dagens partiledning). 

Däremot tänkte jag nämna att Friedrich Ebert-Stiftung nu publicerat ett kort papper av mig kring dagens socialdemokratiska framtidsdebatt. Jag är tacksam att åtta ledande socialdemokrater ställt upp på intervjuer, och för att även andra delat med sig av sina tankar. 

Så här sammanfattar jag slutsatserna:

Sweden’s Social Democrats are reviewing policies after losing power in the 2022 elections. Economic reform, social security, combatting crime and segregation, and climate policy are four priority areas. Leading Social Democrats want to address growing inequality, improve social welfare, reduce crime and thus undermine right-wing populists. Altogether, eleven working groups have been tasked with performing this analysis and formulating proposals for the path forward with a view towards 2030. The next party congress, scheduled for 2025, will decide on future policy. 

Based on conversations with eight leading personalities in the party, the party’s own election analysis, and public debate, this study describes some of the major policy choices the party. What picture emerges from present thinking? And what seems to be missing? Given the current strong polling and public confidence in Magdalena Andersson, radical change seems unlikely. However, as several people interviewed for this study advocate, renewal both of politics and of the party leadership will be important to show a party prepared to give Sweden a new direction with a view to 2030 and beyond. 

In particular, there is a need to show concrete improvement to the welfare system if the party returns to power after 2026. Simultaneously, the challenge of “breaking segregation” and preventing crime requires large-scale investment in social programmes. However, there are no signs of a fundamental rethink regarding frugal economic policy. Without such a shift, necessary to improve welfare and counter segregation, the party might win the 2026 elections on voters’ mistrust in the right-wing government but find it difficult to convince voters in 2030 and beyond.

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