From Iceland — Not Everyone Delighted With Presidential Election Results

Not Everyone Delighted With Presidential Election Results

Published June 27, 2016

Andie Sophia Fontaine
Photo by
Art Bicnick

Some of the candidates who did not make the cut are blaming the media for their low amount of support.

Now that the dust has settled and historian Guðni Th. Jóhannesson is Iceland’s new president, not everyone who ran against him has been taking their defeat well.

Vísir reports that some supporters of Morgunblaðið co-editor Davíð Oddsson, who finished with 13.7%, lay the blame squarely at the feet of the Icelandic media.

Davíð himself has said that public broadcasting network RÚV had “their own candidate” from the beginning. Independence Party alternate MP Óli Björn Kárason agrees, and has called for RÚV to be investigated as a result.

Supporters of Sturla Jónsson, who only secured 3.5% of the vote, were also unhappy, citing the fact that Sturla was a perennial guest on radio station Útvarp Saga, and their online polls had consistently shown him to have levels of support exceeding 25%. It should be noted, however, that Útvarp Saga is decidedly conservative, and their polls are unscientific online surveys.

Ástþór Magnússon, who only secured 0.34% of the vote, has taken a different tack, in filing charges with the Supreme Court over alleged irregularities in offsite voting. The complaint may have some validity – as reported, the earliest round of offsite voting ballots were sent out well before the May 25 deadline for prospective presidents to announce their candidacy. As such, some voters may have received ballots that did not have all the candidates running on them.

Hildur Þórðardóttir, who actually broke presidential election records by securing the least amount of votes of any candidate in Icelandic history with only 294 votes in her favour, has contended that she was treated unfairly during an interview with radio station Rás 1.

Guðni will officially assume the presidency on August 1.

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