Danes’ two polls: one for change one for none

denmarkLast weekend’s referendum concerning an amendment to the Danish constitution on royal succession resulted in a majority vote for adopting absolute primogeniture, while the European Parliament elections saw success for the last national election winners.

The referendum result means the first-born child of the monarch will ascend to the throne regardless of its gender. The process to pass the change in law was incredibly lengthy, but in the end enough voters turned out to see it through.

Politiken explains that Danish law requires any change to its constitution to be passed by two consecutive parliaments separated by an election, and then confirmed by a public referendum in which more than 40 percent of the nation’s electorate turns up and votes in favour of the change.

Political observers had been concerned not enough Danes would vote for the royal referendum because the EU parliament elections were scheduled for the same day. However, 45.5 percent of Danes voted in favour of the new law, with only 7.8 against and 5.3 neutral. Overall, turnout was a fairly impressive 59 percent.

The two parties which did best in Denmark’s last general election were clear winners in the European elections also held at the weekend.

The Copenhagen Post reports that the Danish People’s Party and the Socialist People’s Party each picked up an extra seat and are the only parties to add representatives in Brussels after an election that saw the number of seats held by Denmark in the 736-member parliament reduced by one to 13 as a result of EU expansion.

The most-improved party showing however, was the Danish People’s Party with their “Give us Denmark Back” slogan. They improved their showing by 8.5 percent and now have two MEPs.

The new royal succession law won’t likely have any practical impact on the Danish monarchy for some time, barring an unforeseen tragedy. Crown Prince Frederik is the heir to the throne, which is presently held by his mother Queen Margrethe II. The first-born child of Prince Frederik also happens to be a male, Prince Christian. But the door is now held wider open for future female heirs to the Danish throne.

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