Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Iceland's Pirate Party Makes Strong Showing in New Election

'Like Robin Hood, because Robin Hood was a pirate, we want to take the power from the powerful to give it to the people.'

Common Dreams staff

Iceland's Pirate Party has tripled its seats in the 63-seat parliament, Saturday night's election results show.

Birgitta Jonsdottir, the leader of the Pirate Party, said she was satisfied with the result. “Whatever happens, we have created a wave of change in the Icelandic society,” she told a cheering crowd early Sunday morning.

The Pirates won 10 seats, more than tripling its three seats in the last election. The Left-Green Party also won 10 seats Saturday.

The left-leaning parties — the Left-Greens, the Pirates and two allies — won a total of 27 seats, just short of the 32 required to command a majority in Iceland’s Parliament, the world’s oldest.

The governing center-right Progressive party lost more than half of its seats in the election which was triggered by Prime Minister Sigmundur Gunnlaugsson 's resignation in April in the wake of the leaked Panama Papers which revealed the offshore assets of high-profile figures.

Current Prime Minister Sigurdur Ingi Johannsson said he would resign on Sunday.

The anti-establishment Pirate Party, which was founded in 2012, had said it could be looking to form a coalition with three left-wing and centrist parties.

The Pirates' core issues are: direct democracy, freedom of expression, civil rights, net neutrality, and transparency, all set out in a popular, crowdsourced draft of a new national Constitution that the current government has failed to act on. They also seek to re-nationalize the country's natural resource industries, create new rules for civic governance, and issue a passport to Edward Snowden.

Pirate Party founder and MP Birgitta Jonsdottir said she was "very satisfied" with the result.

"Our internal predictions showed 10 to 15%, so this is at the top of the range. We knew that we would never get 30%," Ms Jonsdottir told Reuters. “We want to see trickle-down ethics rather than make-believe trickle-down economics,” Ms. Jonsdottir, 49, who is also a former WikiLeaks activist, said

“We are a platform for young people, for progressive people who shape and reshape our society,” Ms. Jonsdottir told Agence France-Presse. “Like Robin Hood, because Robin Hood was a pirate, we want to take the power from the powerful to give it to the people.”


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

US Urged to End Drone Strikes After Pentagon Says Killing 10 Afghan Civilians Was 'Horrible Mistake'

"That was not a 'mistake,'" said journalist Anand Giridharadas. "War crimes are not oopsies."

Brett Wilkins ·


40+ NYC Activists Arrested for Protests Against Banks Fueling Climate Emergency

"We're sending a message loud and clear that the little action that politicians and greenwashing CEOs have taken so far does not begin to deal with the magnitude of this crisis."

Jessica Corbett ·


FDA Panel Recommends Pfizer Booster Shots for People 65+ and Especially Vulnerable

The scientific advisory committee voted down a recommendation for other adults.

Common Dreams staff ·


'What Betrayal Looks Like': UN Report Says World on Track for 2.7°C of Warming by 2100

"Whatever our so-called 'leaders' are doing," said Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, "they are doing it wrong."

Jake Johnson ·


Critics Warn Biden That 30% Methane Reduction by 2030 Not Good Enough

Following the new U.S.-E.U. pledge, climate campaigners called for an urgent end to fossil fuel extraction and major reforms of agricultural practices.

Jessica Corbett ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo