Following last week’s announcement of a common Social Democratic-Socialist tax plan and the intention of both parties to form a government after the next election (provided of course that they win a majority with the Red-Green Alliance and Social Liberals), I couldn’t resist playing a game of ministerial chairs.
Now, to political scientists persons are less important than portfolios, so the real issue here is: Provided that S and SF form a government (I assume that the Social Liberals decide to stay out), how would the distribution of portfolios look like?
Given that we do not have any Danish examples and that red-red governments are pretty rare at a national level (Norway is the only really good case, while Gerhard Schröder’s Red-Green governments only partially fit the bill), this is not as easy as one might think. The only thing we can be certain of is that if the present balance of strength holds (25% of the vote to S, 19% to SF), then S should hold 11 or 12 portfolios and SF 8 or 9 in a government with 20 ministers. Also, S as the largest party will take the prime minister’s office.
But as a true dare-devil, I will make a guess:
S will almost certainly take employment/labour, defence and justice, while SF will go for economic planning, environment and at least one of the education portfolios. (If SF takes education, then S takes science or vice versa).
If S takes the foreign ministry, then SF will get development.
If environment is a separate portfolio, then S will take energy and likely transport.
Social affairs and health will be split, with local government attached to either of the portfolios.
SF will need one serious economic ministry, but it could be finance, taxes or possibly business. S will take the two remaining.
Culture and ecclesiastics could go to SF, integration to S.
The 64.000$ question is: Will Villy Søvndal take a separate portfolio (like Bendt Bendtsen and Lene Espersen) or will he have learnt from their difficulties and stick to economic planning and general coordination? My advice would probably be to take economics and leave the dirty business to somebody else. He may want to take Kristin Halvorsen’s advice before deciding.
Oh, and what about Ole Sohn? My guess is that he is too useful to Søvndal in the parliamentary arena, so I can imagine him staying as chairman of the group.
PS: Here is Jens Ringberg’s attempt at forming a S-SF government.