Morning Briefing – Tuesday, November 19

A review of the editorials of the major dailies ahead of today’s local elections

Please note, all summaries below are editorials.

Our power
Yes, the EU dictates our trade, environmental and agricultural policies, but, no, the EU has little to say about the way we organise our schools, kindergartens, eldercare or other forms of social services. Those are reserved for local councillors. Local councils are responsible for two-thirds of national spending on social welfare, which only underscores the importance of today’s election. […] Today is our chance to make sure that local councillors live up the responsibility of their power, and we do that best by voting. – Information

SEE RELATED: Not sure who to vote for? Start here 

Use your voice
Today is election day in Denmark. The long, tiresome campaign is over and today we – the voters – get a chance to have our say. The elections to local and regional councils determine how our daily lives will be shaped for the next four years. It is local and regional councils that make decisions about about the things that are closest to our daily lives. […] Polls indicate that one in ten voter is still undecided on election day. [Knowing what position to take on all the issues] is hard for many. But it’s no more difficult than this: everyone has the right to have an opinion. Today is the day that we exercise that right. – Politiken 

READ our full election coverage

An important day
All in all, today’s local and regional elections will bear witness to a Denmark in change. Venstre won’t necessarily have a lock on power in agricultural communities and Socialdemokraterne won’t necessarily reign supreme in cities. We will see the new, clearly defined parties like Enhedslisten, Dansk Folkeparti and Liberal Alliance come into their own and gain more supporters. Once the results start ticking in, we will – without a doubt – see the formation of unorthodox and often controversial alliances that could result in unpredicted results in some councils. […] It is important to vote. Councils are responsible for more than half of public-sector spending, and while spending has been held in check in recent years, it is concerning that so much of the campaign debate focused on councils demanding more money for social welfare. – Berlingske

READ our endorsement for mayor

No-show voters
A third of the electorate didn’t bother to vote in the 2009 local elections, and an explanation might be that the late-night political negotiations that take place after the votes are counted. All too often, the result is different from the one the majority voted for. Such dealings lead to a detrimental level of disaffection with politicians. […] More than two billion people live in undemocratic states. Seen from that point of view, it should be a civic requirement to vote, given that the declining voter turnout in recent years has undermined democracy. Local and regional politics are not always pretty, and only by voting can the electorate do something to create a more orderly political process than the one we have right now, which all too often takes place late at night and behind closed doors. – Jyllands-Posten

SEE RELATED: Lending an international voice to local affairs

Vote for more jobs
Today’s democratic project calls for us to cast two ballots. So simple, yet so hard, given that the political process in local and regional councils is incomprehensible for most people. That’s why each and every one of us must do our part to make sure that more common sense and more private-sector thinking makes its way into local politics. Vote for candidates who are in favour of local economic development. After decades of political focus on tax-funded social welfare, we find ourselves in a situation of private sector job losses throughout the entire country. […] The easy way out would be to find a candidate who has received money from local businesses to run a campaign that outshines all others. If you can find that candidate, you will likely have found someone companies believe in. – Børsen