Latest News from the Shooting Gallery: Lars Barfoed today announced that he resigns as Minister for Consumer and Family Affairs following the publication of a highly critical report about food control procedures.
In my opinion the resignation in itself wasn’t surprising but what was slightly surprising was the speed of the process: Mr. Barfoed resigned his post one day after the publication of the report and even if the Danish People’s Party had declared that it no longer had confidence in him, the position of the government’s supporting party was – as usual – never really tested.
I think the resignation can be interpreted in two ways: On the one hand, it can be seen as yet another sign of the parliamentary power that the Danish People’s Party holds – and it’s a well-known fact that the DPP has set its eyes on a number of the Conservative ministers. The relationship between the Conservatives and the DPP generally seems strained.
On the other hand, the quick resignation also gives the Conservatives the opportunity to present themselves as the harmed part and blame the DPP for political opportunism: After all, the problems in the food control go back to Ritt Bjerregaard’s days as Minister for Agriculture and Food and Mr. Barfoed has argued that he was working on setting up acceptable procedures for food controls.
In the meantime, Transport Minister Flemming Hansen (also from the Conservatives and another of the DPP’s favourite targets) was let off the hook in the case of the delayed delivery and deployment of the Danish Railways’ new Intercity trainsets.
Update: This post seems to have become a favourite target for comment spammers so I’ve closed comments.