Swedish anti-immigration party building support before vote: poll

A demonstration against the Sweden Democrats in October 2010, in which a leftist party leader said, ‘The Sweden Democrats must leave the country,’ among other insults. Read about it here.

(Reuters) – The anti-immigration Sweden Democrats are more popular than ever, winning over voters from the center right and center left before an early election in March they helped trigger by voting down the government’s budget, a poll showed.

September’s election returned a minority center-left government and left the Sweden Democrats holding the balance of power as the country’s third-largest party.

Showing their growing clout, the party this month blocked the budget by backing a rival finance bill put forward by the center-right Alliance opposition, leading Social Democrat Prime Minister Stefan Lofven to call the new election just two months after taking power.

With the left and right roughly equal in size, the growing powerbase of the Sweden Democrats could leave them again as kingmakers in a fractured parliament as each side try to lash together a stable government.

The poll for broadcaster TV4 released on Tuesday showed the party with 16.0 percent of the vote, up 3.7 points from a month earlier and ahead of the 12.9 percent they got in September.

Pollsters Novus said that was the highest level of support seen in one of its surveys for the party, which wants to cut asylum seeker numbers by 90 percent…