Two polls released today show a tight race for Iceland’s parliamentary parties, as the country votes for a new government almost exactly one year from its previous elections.
According to a poll from Stöð 2/Fréttablaðið, the Independence Party is in the lead, with 24.1%, which would translate into 17 seats in Iceland’s 63-seat parliament. The Leftist-Greens follow close behind, at 19.2%, which would mean 14 seats.
The Social Democrats have demonstrated rising support, and are now at 14.3%, which would take them from three seats to ten. However, the Pirate Party has been steadily losing support, and are now at 9.4%, which would take them from ten seats to six.
The other two parties in the current ruling coalition with the Independence Party, the Reform Party and Bright Future, have been facing two very different fates. While the former has been hanging in there, with 7.5% or five seats, the latter is all but dissipated – Bright Future is currently with 1.9%, and stand likely to lose all four of their seats.
Meanwhile, two new parties – the People’s Party and the Centre Party, the latter of which is led by former Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson – are at 4.4% and 9.6%, respectively. As such, the former does not quite have enough votes to win a seat in parliament, while the latter may win up to seven seats. The Progressive Party, from which Sigmundur originally hails, is at 6.2%, which would mean four seats instead of the six they currently have.
Another poll, conducted by the Social Science department of the University of Iceland for Morgunblaðið, shows a similar pattern.
Taken together, a possible left wing coalition of the Leftist-Greens, the Social Democrats and the Pirates would not have enough seats to form a majority. In fact, no two-party coalition is possible according to these results, and a three-party coalition would not be possible without the inclusion of the Independence Party. A few four-party coalitions are possible, but Icelanders traditionally have difficulty accepting three-party coalitions as it is.
Grapevine will be livetweeting tomorrow’s elections, using the hashtag #GVelections17, and we will be liveblogging the latest results as they come.