It’s a banner year for municipal elections in Reykjavík for a variety of reasons, not least of which is the sheer number of parties running. This election year sees a special blend of parties currently sitting on City Council in Reykjavík, who are outnumbered by familiar parties in Parliament, perennial outsiders, and even some parties created expressly for the city elections. Here’s who they are and our own brief takes on what they stand for:
S-list: the Social Democrats. Currently leading the city, and strong contenders to do it again. The Social Democrats, and parties adjacent to them (e.g. the Best Party and Bright Future), have long been the prefered favourites for running Reykjavík. Consider them a safe bet.
D-list: the Independence Party. The arch-enemies of the Social Democrats, currently polling strong enough to also be contenders for leading the next City Council. Critical of Social Democrat policies, their own alternatives cater to the city’s wealthy and elderly.
V-list: the Left-Greens. In the current Reykjavík City Council majority. Have always been outside players with a seat or two, playing a supporting role in any even vaguely leftist council.
P-list: the Pirate Party. Also in the current Reykjavík City Council majority. Have been polling exceptionally well lately, but don’t forget the pre-election Pirate surge in 2016’s Parliament elections, and how that turned out.
B-list: the Progressive Party. Traditionally the party for farmers, they have never done well in Reykjavík. Managed to get two seats in 2014 due to openly Islamophobic campaigning, and have effectively cratered since then. Virtually extinct in the capital.
C-list: the Reform Party. Newcomers to city politics, they already have seats in Parliament, and their #2 candidate is a former MP, Pawel Bartoszek. Could syphon votes away from the Independence Party.
F-list: the People’s Party. Also newcomers to city politics with seats in Parliament. A populist party currently struggling to poll well enough for a single seat.
M-list: the Centre Party. Again, newcomers to city politics with seats in Parliament. The home of Progressive Party exiles, best defined for their surreal Viking-themed campaign ads. Might actually win a seat.
R-list: the People’s Front of Iceland. Our own Marxist-Leninists, they are always in the running for City Council and Parliament, and never do well enough to win a seat in either.
J-list: the Socialist Party. Formed last year, this is their first campaign. Actively campaigning on social media, slowly eeking their way up the polls.
Þ-list: the Freedom Party. Populists who oppose the building of a mosque in Reykjavík and want immigrants to become Icelandic but are in no way xenophobic at all, no sir. Polling badly.
E-list: the Icelandic National Front. Another populist, totally-not-racist party from whom the Freedom Party split. Also polling badly.
H-list: the Capital City List. An enigma wrapped in a riddle inside a mystery. Possibly running just for the sake of running, currently polling outside of the running.
K-list: the Women’s Movement. All-woman political party, which is not unheard of in Icelandic politics. Has a platform that naturally focuses on women’s rights.
Y-list: the Men’s Movement. Troll campaign comprised of older men irritated with the Women’s Movement. Not to be taken seriously.
O-list: Our City – Reykjavík. The self-serving party of Sveinbjörg B. Sveinbjörnsdóttir, a former Progressive city councilperson largely responsible for that party’s Islamophobic campaign in 2014, who later left the party for not defending her racism strongly enough.
Read more election coverage here.