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The elected joke

Jacob Haugaard, a Danish comedian, ran for parliament every national election from 1979 up until 1994 – as a joke, of course. But in 1994, he won.

Danish Parliament

News Øresund – Johan Wessman [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Haugaard founded the Union of Conscientiously Work-Shy Elements (Sammenslutning af Bevidst Arbejdssky Elementer) in 1979 and ran on an ambitious platform that included tailwinds on all bicycle lanes, better weather, Nutella in armed forces rations, and more bread for ducks in parks.

What happened in 1994 to get him elected? The Wikipedia article doesn’t say, just that he got 23,253 “personal” votes. At the time he had put out a book for first-time voters, so that probably had something to do with it.

In any case, he took his role seriously. It was just as well that he did, because he was elected to a hung parliament and sometimes had the deciding vote! Haugaard even managed to fulfil some of his campaign pledges: two of the four listed above. I’ll let you work out which ones.

Categories: Europe Places Politics & law

The Generalist

I live in Auckland, New Zealand, and am curious about most things.

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