Published in the 2013 January-March issue of Iceland Review – IR 01.13. By Eygló Svala Arnarsdóttir. Photo by Páll Stefánsson.
Icelandic politics are in turmoil. Faith in politicians collapsed along with the banks in 2008 and has not been restored since—a 2012 Capacent Gallup survey concluded that 90 percent of respondents have little trust in Alþingi, the parliament. Founded in 930, it’s the world’s oldest existing parliamentary institution.
Comprised of 63 MPs, the parliament is Iceland’s legislative assembly. Ministers of the coalition government have a seat in parliament, alongside government and opposition MPs, and must abide by the will of the majority of parliamentarians. The Prime Minister is the most powerful person in Iceland while the President serves as a figurative leader.
The vast majority of seats usually go to fjórflokkurinn: the right-leaning Independence Party, the central Progressive Party, and the left-leaning Social Democratic Alliance and Left-Green Movement.
For the first time in the Independence Party’s eight-decade history, it was not the largest party after the 2009 election. The Social Democrats won the election and forged the country’s first all-left coalition with the Left-Greens. However, recent surveys indicate that the Independence Party may reclaim its position in the next election, in April 2013.
You can read the remainder of the article in the 2013 January-March issue of Iceland Review – IR 01.13.Five times a year the print edition of Iceland Review & Atlantica brings you a wealth of articles on all aspects of life in Iceland including Páll Stefánsson's latest images of the country’s majestic landscape. Click here to subscribe and here to browse through a selection of pages from the current issue.