Lesser-known parties see local elections as their time to shine

It’s not just about Venstre or Socialdemokraterne, in the local elections you can also cast your vote for the hemp party or the love party

From nihilists to nationalists, from Bornholm separatists to Copenhagen reality stars, this month’s local elections bring all kinds of interesting people and ideas out of the woodwork.

Smaller parties, or even just individuals, use the elections to make their voices heard. But they fight an uphill battle. Compared to the established parties, they don’t have the resources, funds or the organisational capacity to campaign for support at the same level. Yet, despite this, nearly five percent of the votes in the local elections of 2009 were given to small ‘local’ parties nationwide.

Here are a few noteworthy parties battling for votes and exposure in Copenhagen:

It’s all in the name for Hampepartiet, or in English, the Hemp Party. Hampepartiet, led by Klaus Trier Tuxen, has one and only one agenda: ‘legalising cannabis’. 

Hampepartiet wants to follow in the footsteps of the Dutch model, where one can purchase cannabis in so-called coffee shops – a practice that has existed since 1976.

Tuxen has argued that the plant not only has many benefits, but that society wastes billions of kroner upholding the laws forbidding the use of cannabis. Legal stimulants like alcohol and tobacco are far more dangerous, he contends.

Kommunisterne, the national communist party, recognises that Copenhagen is a diverse and multicultural city, but it feels that the city is working class and belongs in the hands of its citizens.

Kommunisterne wants to expand and invest more in the public sector. 

Focusing on public transport to reduce traffic and pollution is another goal, as is ensuring that city dwellers can find housing for a reasonable price.

Det Grønne Parti 

The Danish Green Party has the ambitious goal of making Denmark the most sustainable country on the planet.

Led by Chinese-Australian business consultant George Ge, Det Grønne Parti wants to create a sustainable Denmark through two stages. The first involves creating sustainable jobs in Denmark, and the second is restructuring and rebuilding Denmark from the bottom up “to be a truly sustainable country”.

Det Grønne Parti also wants to make English the official working language, and strongly supports dual citizenship. 

Den Lille Mand
Den Lille Mand (the Litte Man) has been involved in the past two local elections and is led by Tom Jæger.

The focus of Den Lille Mand’s election campaign is getting the Danish war veterans the proper help they need to readjust themselves back into society after returning from the frontline. 

Den Lille Mand has lambasted governmental efforts to help the 90,000 veterans who have represented Denmark since 1992, citing the few or no resources available to assist veterans returning home with the scars of war. 

Schiller Instituttets Venner 
Named after the famous German poet, philosopher, historian and playwright Friedrich Schiller, Schiller Instituttets Venner (the Schiller Institute’s Friends) strives to improve the well-being of Danes and residents of the world in general.

The party claims that globalisation and greed catalysed the collapse of the global financial system. The party’s leading candidate in Copenhagen, Tom Gillesberg, campaigns on reinstating a global banking system similar to the repealed Glass-Steagall Act in the US that would separate commercial and investment banking, thus creating a more secure global financial system. 

Kærlighedspartiet, the Love Party, is led by Allan Anarchos and strives to keep Christiania a freetown while ridding it of Pusher Street and the violence fostered by its drug trade.

“Christiania without Al Capone and his soldiers,” the party argues.

Kærlighedspartiet also calls for more direct democracy for the citizens of the city and wants its citizens to be handed more power via public meetings and popular votes. 

The party also has the oldest running candidate in Denmark, Harry Ahlberg, who at 93 is campaigning for better conditions for the elderly.

Sunshine Partiet
Peer J Pedersen is the one-man Sunshine Party and is all about “spreading more happiness and sunshine in the city”.

Pedersen wants to bring more culture and fun to Copenhagen by providing smaller theatres with better support initiatives and having more sports and entertainment facilities to keep children off the streets.

The Sunshine Party also wants to allow for the purchase of single zone transport tickets and to curb traffic in the city by not allowing any privately-owned vehicles in the city centre unless they are registered by people who live there. 

Piratpartiet, the Pirate Party, refers to itself as Denmark’s information party. It wants to focus on citizens’ rights to a private life and fight against those who believe that it is the state’s responsibility to monitor the public.

To this end, the 197-member party argues that culture and knowledge should be free and accessible for everyone. 

It campaigns for free file-sharing and a legal framework that can only regulate the use and copying of files that is motivated by profit gain. The sampling of existing work should be free, they contend.

The Pirate Party strives for shorter commercial exclusivity rights and believes that patents are unnecessary because they only serve to protect big business.

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