Iceland’s new government sees strong support

By Hjörtur J. Guðmundsson, Iceland Monitor - January 2, 2018
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Iceland's Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir, leader of the Left Green Movement. (Eggert Jóhannesson / Iceland Monitor)
Iceland’s Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir, leader of the Left Green Movement. (Eggert Jóhannesson / Iceland Monitor)

Roughly three out of every four voters in Iceland, or about 74 percent, support the government, which took power at the end of November under the premiership of Katrín Jakobsdóttir following the general elections a month earlier, according to a fresh opinion poll by Gallup.

The government is a coalition of the Left Green Movement, the conservative Independence Party and the centrist Progressive Party. The cooperation is historic as this is only the second time the Independence Party has ever worked with the party furthest to the left in Iceland’s parliament in government. The first time was in 1944 or 73 years ago.

This is the first time Gallup has measured the support the government enjoys since it took over, but two previous polls published in December and produced by other pollsters also suggest Jakobsdóttir and her team enjoy strong support among Icelandic voters.

Just before Christmas the pollster MMR put the support for the government at 66.7 percent and two weeks earlier, a few days into December, a poll produced by the newspaper Fréttablaðið measured the support as 78 percent.

Few Icelandic governments have had this good start.

Meanwhile the parties that form the coalition government do not enjoy this much support. The Gallup poll measures their combined support at 54 percent which means that more than a quarter of those who support the government are not voters of one of the three government parties.