Denmark Votes “Yes” for Equal Primogeniture

  June 7, 2009 at 8:39 pm by

The Danish Constitution on the Act of Succession will be ammended to allow the monarch’s first-born child of either gender to succeed the throne, following the successful referendum on equal primogeniture this weekend.

According to Politiken.dk, 45.5% of the entire Danish electorate (4.03 million Danes) voted in favour of the proposed change, which will see future first-born daughters of Danish monarchs retain their place in the order of succession even if a younger brother is born. At least 40% of the electorate was required to vote ‘yes’ to the referendum for it to pass. 59% of eligible Danes voted, with 7.8% voting ‘no’ and 5.3% casting a blank vote.

Danish Prime Minister Lars L√łkke Rasmussen told his Liberal Party that, “It’s a strong signal that shows that we want to be a society where men and women have the same opportunities, whether it’s for ordinary people or princes and princesses,” after the result was announced.

It was unsure just two hours before the polls closed if the ammendment would pass. Exit polls provided by Politiken and TV2 stated that only 75.5% of those who turned out to vote had voted ‘yes’ – which overall created a 37.9% ‘yes’ from the total electorate, falling 2.1% short of the required target.

This caused Prime Minister Rasmussen to tell the Danes that, “The polling stations are open until 8 pm. I appeal, of course, to people to use their right to vote, and if you share our point of views to vote in favour,” via TV2.

Doubt was also raised months ago when the referendum was announced to be held on the same weekend as the elections for the European Parliament (where Denmark has 14 seats), which generally see a lower voter turn-out than national elections. The fact that this law will not have any large effect on the succession until at least second-in-line Prince Christian has children also caused debate about the reason of holding the referendum in 2009.

Read more about the succession referendum here.

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One Response to Denmark Votes “Yes” for Equal Primogeniture

  1. Pingback: The Royal Forums » June 2009 Newsletter: The 1940s

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