Up until recently Fremskrittspartiet (The Progress Party, FrP) was the only political party in Norway that offered an immigration-critical alternative for the tradition-minded Norwegian voter. Now, however, there is no longer any such alternative. The FrP’s electoral success in recent years has made its leaders long for the “strange new respect” that can only be conferred by the overwhelmingly leftist Norwegian media establishment.
Anders Behring Breivik sealed the new order of things last July, and now the transformation of the FrP is complete. In their zeal to purge the party of any taint of “racism”, they have repudiated their ideological cousins in the Sweden Democrats.
Our Norwegian correspondent The Observer has translated an article about the FrP’s new talking points vis-à-vis the Sweden Democrats. The translator includes this note:
This article confirms what conservatives in Norway have known for a long time: the FrP is no longer a reliable alternative for opponents of Multiculturalism in Norway. The FrP gained prominence under the leadership of Carl I. Hagen as a strong anti-PC and anti-immigration party, which conservative voters were quick to embrace.
Now, however, with Mr. Hagen no longer in charge, power-hungry career politicians from within party ranks, who care more about themselves than they do for the future of their country, have decided that it’s time to shed the strong anti-immigration focus and cement their newly-won position as one of the biggest political parties in Norway.
But it’s not going to do the FrP any good. Their traditional voters are not stupid, and the political polls indicate that the party is losing support at breakneck speed.
I suspect that within a couple of years we’ll see FrP candidates with strong anti-immigration views break away and start a new political party. This has happened before.
The translated article from VG:
FrP is no fan of the Sweden Democrats
The Sweden Democrats admire the FrP (Progress Party) and they dream about becoming just as big and mainstream as the FrP is in Norway. However, the admiration is not reciprocated.
“The enthusiasm is not mutual, and you can put three exclamation marks behind that statement,” says Member of Parliament Jan Arild Ellingsen of the FrP to Klassekampen [“Class Struggle” — Communist newspaper].
Ever since the Sweden Democrats (SD) entered the Swedish Parliament, the FrP has attempted strongly to distance itself from the political party.
“The FrP is a responsible party that has matured considerably in recent years. We have contributed to three of the four national budgets delivered by the Bondevik government. So you won’t find any traces of racism here, if that’s what you’re looking for,” Elingsen says.
He agrees that there have been several taboos in the Norwegian and Swedish immigration debate, but says that the policies of the Sweden Democrats are simply unpalatable.
“We have managed to influence the debate in Norway by breaking taboos. And we have in particular managed to influence the Labour Party. But having said that, we don’t condone the racist policies of the Sweden Democrats,” Ellingsen concludes.
If I were a member of the Sweden Democrats, my response to the FrP would be: “Et tu, Brute?”