Tag Archives: Eirik Berger

Out of left field: Liberal Party defies predictions, joins Labor for new Longyearbyen Community Council majority

laborrules

After all the shocks and twists, Longyearbyen’s new political leadership will be pretty much what everybody long expected before the votes were counted.

The Labor Party will retain its leadership of the Longyearbyen Community Council and top-ranked candidate Arild Olsen will be the city’s new mayor starting Tuesday after the newly elected Liberal Party members agreed to form a majority with the Labor members. The general assumption after the Oct. 5 election – by Olsen and other Labor Party members, along with the media and many residents – was the Liberals would shake up the city’s leadership by aligning with the Conservative Party.

Vote for sale: Fight for council majority drags on w/out major bargaining chip as Store Norske’s fate likely set

leftnegotiate

Eirik Berger may the least experienced politician in Longyearbyen, but right now he’s arguably the most powerful. And he’s taking his time making sure he doesn’t squander it.

Right turn: Conservatives pull even with Labor on local council; offer mayor’s spot to Liberals in bid for majority

conservatives

Maybe it was the common practice of ousting the ruling party during a crisis. Maybe it was the pledge to seek more help from the national government to retain existing jobs. Maybe they were driven to vote at the last minute by a poll showing them losing badly. Maybe it was an appeal to the large – and largely ignored – bloc of non-Norwegian voters.

Or maybe (you saw this coming) it was some combination of them.

Upstart: Top candidate first-time Liberal Party sees a future of many small ideas working to make a big impact

venstre

Eirik Berger isn’t one for big solutions. Instead he favors lots of people coming up with smaller ones.

The top-ranked candidate for the Liberal Party, which is on the ballot for the first time in a Longyearbyen Community Council election, said one of the flaws of the current leadership is “they have focused on replacing one big industry with another big industry” without knowing what it might be. While ambitions of doubling tourism are being discussed, he said it’s a seasonal industry susceptible to tough times.