Speaker of the Parliament of Sweden

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Speaker of the Riksdag
Riksdagens talman
Flag of Sweden.svg
Coat of arms of the Swedish Parliament.svg
The three crowns, as used by the Riksdag
Per Westerberg.jpg
Per Westerberg

since October 2, 2006
The Riksdag
Style Mister Speaker
Swedish: Herr talman
Residence no official residence
Nominator The Prime Minister
Appointer The Alderman (longest serving member),
following a vote in the Riksdag
Term length Four years (de facto)
a vote is always held after a general election
Inaugural holder Henry Allard
Formation 1971
when the Riksdag became unicameral
Deputy The 1st Deputy Speaker
Website www.riksdagen.se

The Speaker of the Riksdag (Swedish: Riksdagens talman) is the presiding officer of the national unicameral legislature in Sweden.

The Riksdag underwent profound changes in 1867, when the medieval Riksdag of the Estates was abolished. The new form of the Riksdag included two elected chambers, each with its own Speaker. Since the de facto introduction of parliamentarism in 1917, the Riksdag has properly functioned as the institution to which the Prime Minister and the Government are held accountable. In 1971 the institution was transformed into a unicameral legislature with 349 members. Since 1975, in accordance with the Instrument of Government of 1974, it is the Speaker and no longer the Monarch who appoints and dismisses the Prime Minister.

The current Speaker is Per Westerberg, who has held the gavel since 2006.

Duties of the Speaker[edit]

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This article is part of a series on the
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The Speaker is the head and presiding officer of the Riksdag, and is elected by the chamber as the first order of business when the Riksdag re-convenes following a general election. As such he coordinates the work that takes place in the Riksdag. The office is mandated in the Swedish constitution and the duties of the office are set out on the Instrument of Government (1974) and the Riksdag Act.

The Speaker does not take part in the debates, nor does he participate in the parliamentary committees. While the Speaker is one of the elected representatives of the Riksdag, he is expected to remain unbiased and objective with regards to the political issues that are debated. The Speaker has no vote in the Riksdag, but the incumbent could use his vote as a member of the Riksdag if a tie appears.

The position of Speaker is the second highest ranked public position in Sweden. In terms of protocol, the Monarch outranks the Speaker since he is the head of state. However since that position is hereditary a person cannot be elected to become the monarch. The Speaker outranks the Prime Minister of Sweden.

Appointment and Dismissal of Prime Minister[edit]

One of the more important aspects of the work of the Speaker is to head the negotiations concerning the forming of a new government in case there is a shift of power after an election. The speaker proposes the new prime ministerial candidate to the chamber, and following a positive vote, the Speaker signs the commission (Swedish: förordnande) on behalf of the Riksdag. The Prime Minister appoints and dismisses his own cabinet ministers, forming the Government (Swedish: Regeringen), without the involvement of the Speaker.

The Prime Minister hands his letter of resignation to the Speaker, following either a voluntary resignation or a vote of no confidence.

In most other parliamentary systems, including other constitutional monarchies, these duties are instead handled by the head of state. Relieving the Swedish Monarch from exercise of political powers, although not the key objective from the outset, became nevertheless an important part on the constitutional reform in the 1970s.

Deputy Speakers[edit]

The Speaker is assisted by three deputy speakers who are also elected by the chamber. The unwritten convention is that the First Deputy Speaker is chosen from the members of the largest opposition party, if the Speaker is a member from the largest majority party.

Regent ad interim[edit]

In case all adult members of the Swedish Royal Family who are in the line of succession to the Throne, as prescribed in the Act of Succession, are out of the country, the Speaker assumes the role of Regent ad interim (Swedish: Riksföreståndare). This would also be the case if they were all to decease.

Riksdag Board[edit]

The Speaker chairs the Riksdag Board (Swedish: Riksdagsstyrelsen), which deliberates on the organisation of the work of the Riksdag, directs the work of the Riksdag Administration (Swedish: Riksdagsförvaltningen) and decides upon matters of major significance concerning the international contacts programme.

War Delegation[edit]

The Speaker chairs the War Delegation (Swedish: Krigsdelegationen), when it is deemed necessary to convene.

List of Speakers[edit]

Speakers of the bicameral Riksdag (1867-1970)[edit]

Speakers of the First Chamber (upper house)[edit]

Speakers of the Second Chamber (lower house)[edit]

Speakers of the unicameral Riksdag (1971-present)[edit]

Election Cycle Speaker First Deputy Speaker Second Deputy Speaker Third Deputy Speaker
1971–1973 Henry Allard (s) Torsten Bengtson (c) Cecilia Nettelbrandt (fp) Ivar Virgin (m)
1973 – 1976 Ivar Virgin (m) Cecilia Nettelbrandt (fp)
1976 – 1979 Tage Magnusson (m) Karl Erik Eriksson (fp)
1979 – 1982 Ingemund Bengtsson (s) Ingegerd Troedsson (m) Thorsten Larsson (c)
1982 – 1985 Anders Dahlgren (c)
1985 – 1988 Karl Erik Eriksson (fp)
Christer Eirefelt (fp)
Anders Dahlgren (c)
Bertil Fiskesjö (c)
1988 – 1991 Thage G. Peterson (s) Christer Eirefelt (fp) Bertil Fiskesjö (c)
1991 – 1994 Ingegerd Troedsson (m) Stig Alemyr (s)
1994 – 1998 Birgitta Dahl (s) Anders Björck (m) Görel Thurdin (c) Christer Eirefelt (fp)
1998 – 2002 Eva Zetterberg (v) Rose-Marie Frebran (kd)
2002 – 2006 Björn von Sydow (s) Anders Björck (m)
Per Westerberg (m)
Kerstin Heinemann (fp) Helena Höij (kd)
2006 – 2010 Per Westerberg (m) Jan Björkman (s) Birgitta Sellén (c) Liselott Hagberg (fp)
2010 – present Susanne Eberstein (s) Ulf Holm (mp) Liselott Hagberg (fp)
Jan Ertsborn (fp)
since 2012

See also[edit]

Historical predecessor


External links[edit]