Danish politician defects to the opposition over CO2 tax

Denmark's coalition government is in danger of losing its majority now that another of their MPs has switched to the opposition.

Danish MP Mads Fuglede from the liberal centre-right Venstre party has switched to the right-wing populist Danish Democrats. Fuglede says he made his decision because of his fundamental criticism of the proposal for the introduction of a CO2 tax on agricultural products.

The Danish coalition government is now dependent on the tolerating support of four 'North Atlantic' MPs (= politicians from Greenland). The foursome normally never gets involved in votes on what they consider 'domestic Danish affairs'. 

Fuglede is not the only one switching sides. Jon Stephensen, another member of Venstre, has pledged to continue supporting the government in the difficult carbon tax dossier. Political dynamics in Denmark are complex and shifts in party loyalty have direct consequences for the stability of the government.

In recent decades, the country had minority governments that were tolerated by other factions. These governments usually did not serve their term of office and fell due to disagreements with the toleraters. Since the end of last year, Denmark has had a 'normal' majority coalition of social democrats and liberals for the first time since 1933.

Denmark could become the first European country to actually introduce a carbon tax. Just last month, a group of Danish experts, at the request of the coalition and opposition, issued a positive opinion on it.