The first 100 days

Mr Rasmussen is certainly the most skilled dealmaker in Parliament. And now he will have to dig deep and utilise the full range of his repertoire.

Safe for a year at least
However, it is unlikely any of the other parties will try to topple him in the next 12 to 24 months, as they all stand to lose more than they are likely to win.

The runner-up, Socialdemokraterne, with a new chairman and a strong team, do not see a majority platform coming anytime soon and will be more concerned not to lose ground to the left-wing Enhedslisten.

So Mr Rasmussen has a safe run for a while.

Tough battles ahead

Another matter is if he is able to get his hand around the major issues. The first test will be the state budget in October when he will face a majority in favour of expansion against his steadfast program of zero growth in the public sector.

He will have to be flexible and expand in certain areas while trying to compensate in others by cutting back.

The greatest danger to him might be that he becomes neutralised and is unable to drive any reforms through. He is a fighter, but even tough fighters have to reach for the towel when the walk is not in the park but the desert.

Mainstays and mavericks
We will see some of his seasoned ministers try his patience. Mr Søren Pind at the Justice Ministry has expressed sympathy for the liberalisation of cannabis, and he is a maverick, so he might just try it.

He could even halve the number of inmates in the prisons in the process and effectively put Pusher Street out of business. Mr Rasmussen would appreciate that.

Mr Hans Christian Schmidt over at the Transport Ministry would like to see the Fehmarn connection come through – if for no other reason than the southern region desperately needing the jobs. But will he find the missing 4 billion kroner?

Agriculture, planning, environmental and infrastructure issues will engage several ministers.

Growth in the marginal areas is imperative if they want to stop Dansk Folkeparti getting an even firmer hold there based upon job uncertainty, falling house prices and the fear of immigrants.

Mr Bertel Haarder, the cultural beacon of the government, was a good choice for the post. Given the confidence he has in Danish values, he might even be the one who suggests adopting English as a second language.

We will wait and see. He is old enough not to have anything to lose.

Soon we will know
Give them a 100-day period to settle in and we will know if we have a government or just a dog being wagged by the tail.