Sunday, June 7, 2009, in Sweden are elections for the European Union parliament. (The EU election date for other countries varies.) One of the newer parties vying for a seat at the table is the “Feminist Initiative” (FI!), a party which includes men and women putting forth a feminist platform.
(excerpt from) The Local: Sweden’s News in English
Abba great’s donation to boost feminists’ EU bid
Composer Benny Andersson of Abba fame has contributed one million kronor ($128,000) to ensure that Swedish voters have a chance to vote for Gudrun Schyman’s Feminist Initiative (Feministiskt initiative – FI) political party in Sunday’s EU parliamentary elections.
Schyman has previously taken offence at the fact that ballots for FI were not available at all polling stations. And she claims that Andersson wants to spend his money to bring attention to the technical issues related to voting.
“This is not a contribution to an electoral campaign,” Schyman told Sveriges Televisions (SVT).
“It is the question of democracy that is important here.”
Anderson confirmed the news in a statement of his own.
“Because I sympathize with Gudrun Schyman’s persistent struggle for equal treatment, I offered to try and help by providing financial support for an advertisement that explains what to do when the pre-printed ballots are missing.”
On Friday, Schyman published full-spread advertisements in several Swedish newspapers. But Andersson also supports Schyman’s politics and would like to see her gain a seat in the EU Parliament…
I think that third parties should borrow a page from this story. We should invite in donors who do not always agree with us point for point, or don’t like “politics” so much, but would be willing to donate money when they see it as supporting “voter choice”, fair access to the voting system, grassroots democracy, etc.
We have done literature here in Suffolk for candidates (especially during petitioning) which basically says, “regardless of whether you agree with everything we say, sign for us, or vote for us, simply to support alternative choices.”
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