The battle for the grass root of KrF has started
The uncertainty may last until the very end for which path the Christian Democrats (KrF) will choose to follow in the future. The battle is on in the local party groups.
In the coming weeks, the local party groups of the Christian Democrats will decide who will be allowed to attend the extraordinary National Convention on November 2nd. There the KrF will decide whether the party wish to enter the current Government – or aim to form a Government together with Labour and the Centre Party.
At the National Council meeting on Friday, Party Leader Knut Arild Hareide made it clear that he roots for the second option. The main reason is that he believes the political distance between the Christian Democrats and the Progress Party is too large.
It was Hareide himself who proposed to hold an extraordinary National Convention to ensure that the decision is approved by the grass root of the thoroughly divided Party.
– On Monday there will be sent out a summons to an extraordinary meeting in the County Organisation, states county leader in Rogaland KrF, Oddny Helen Turøy, to NTB. The actual meeting will likely take place towards the end of October. The same will happen in Hordaland, according to the county leader there, Dag Sele.
Before that time, local organisations must hold extraordinary meetings where delegates to the county council meeting will be elected. They will, in turn, elect participants at the national level.
In advance of the national meeting, KrF’s National Assembly will also issue a statement in the matter, according to information provided to NTB.
One big question is whether the delegates to the National Convention will be bound by a mandate from their respective local and county organisations.
– We will need to discuss that. But it is up to each local group how they will handle this, says Turøy.
This may imply that the uncertainty about which way the decision will sway can last until the very last moment.
– It will be very exciting, Turøy says.
Sele points out that KrF does not have the tradition of binding people to a decision.
– At the same time, it is clear that the delegates being sent know what their county councils wish for, he continues.
He himself fully agrees with Hareide’s advice to go to take a left turn. Where Hordaland, known as a rather conservative county, will land, he dares not to predict.
– But the impression of how conservative Hordaland is – is probably exaggerated. The situation is complex, says Sele.
That Hareide’s advice of taking a historical left-turn would lead to war in the grass root of KrF, is rejected by the Party leader himself and Turøy.
– We have known all along that this will be very difficult. But we had a very nice tone at the National Council meeting – which I hope will continue, Turøy goes on to say.
Will Hareide survive?
Another big question is whether Hareide can continue as a party leader if he loses the fight for the road ahead. Currently, it is unclear what the feeling in KrF is, according to Turøy.
– This debate has only come to the fore in the last two days, she points out.
– Hareide has a very strong position in the Party, says Sele, who does not want to speculate on who may take over the leadership from Hareide.
– That is not an issue at the moment, Sele concludes.
© NTB scanpix / #Norway Today