…things were pretty quiet before the sprint to the finish began, so I caught up with some of the interview programmes from DR1 I hadn’t watched during the week.
The programme with the Danish People’s Party was a very quiet affair. The party concentrated on immigration and similar issues (well, duh), tried to present itself as the rescuer of the Early Retirement Benefit and stayed away from general economic policy. Basically, this continued the party’s line of claiming to be responsible by supporting the government’s economic policies and picking the issues it knew would go down well with its voters.
Given that the other parties in the “Blue camp” began the campaign by putting distance to DF and that the party is at risk of losing its direct parliamentary influence after the election, Pia Kjærsgaard and Kristian Thulesen Dahl managed to keep brave faces and appear to be on top of the situation. Kjærsgaard, in particular, avoided her usual tendency of sounding slightly offended by other parties. A professional performance.
The question is if DF’s strategy will have an impact. Obviously, the higher immigration is on the political agenda, the more DF has benefited in the past decade, but the economy has so far been the main issue and polls show that the overwhelming majority of voters are satisfied with present policies. Still, DF could mobilise the 15% of the electorate which is staunchly anti-immigration.
The Social Democrats are in a different spot. They have to play the economy and did so with a presentation that had “lights one” and “the ordinary Dane” as its main components. So far, so good, but the problems arise when Helle Thorning-Schmidt and Henrik Sass Larsen almost immediately entered a very detailed discussion including a lot of numbers. The SocDems have to prove economic competence as well as attracting voters who fear for their jobs in the short and the long run, but I was not immediately convinced by the effectiveness of the SocDem campaign strategy. It was okay, but far from stellar. (But then again, the SocDems cannot risk repeating the Liberals’ mistake from the 1998 election and assuming that electoral victory is safe).
On TV2 News, Margrethe Vestager was in the Hot Chair and took a glass of water which tumbled over in its stride. The themes were well-known and Vestager’s job was to keep the doors to the negotiations with SocDem and SF in the event of a “Red” victory open. So-so, but it will not affect the SocLibs negatively.
And on Sunday morning, the real fun began. But that is for the next round-up.