Following the news this morning that Donald Trump will become the 45th president of the United States, a blurry-eyed Denmark is coming to terms with the historic vote.
Considering that just 5 percent of Danes believed Trump would win the election, the shock in Denmark was palpable – not one of the nine Parliamentary parties wanted Trump to win, and their response to his triumph reflects that.
Mogens Lykketoft, the ex-president of the United Nations General Assembly and former foreign minister of Denmark, told CPH POST at the US Embassy’s breakfast-time election press conference that the Trump victory indicates “we are heading into a more unsafe period because we just don’t know what he might do”.
“From what he’s said on the campaign trail, he is opposed to any movement on climate change, may start a trade war on China, and won’t join hands with Europe to oppose Putin,” he continued.
“It is very worrying. The hope is that there will be checks and balances, but even without having majorities in the houses, Trump can still push through a lot of legislation by executive order.”
Government party Venstre was more diplomatic in its remarks, citing that Denmark would remain a close friend to the US, although it remains to be seen how Trump’s foreign affairs policy will impact relations.
“We will always aim to have a relationship that is as close as possible with whoever the president of the US is,” Michael Aastrup Jensen, the spokesperson for foreign affairs for Venstre, told TV2 News.
“We know that Donald Trump will start some form of co-operation with Russia, which no-one in Europe believes in. We also know that he has said he will annihilate the terror organisation Islamic State. What that means, we don’t know, as he has yet to convey that plan.”
Meanwhile, Nick Hækkerup, the spokesperson for foreign affairs for Socialdemokratiet, called Trump’s win “problematic”, citing there was good reason to feel more insecure today than was the case yesterday.
Right wing party Dansk Folkeparti (DF) hopes Trump will come around, despite a number of “unsettling” statements – such as building a wall on the border with Mexico.
“It’s very unpredictable,” Søren Espersen, a spokesperson for foreign affairs for DF, told TV2 News.
“I think he will try to approach Russia and demand that western European nations move with spending the 2 percent of GDP on defence, as we have promised to do. He’s said a lot of stupid things – such as building a wall on the border with Mexico – but I think he will come around to reality.”
Liberal Alliance concurred that the future is up in the air and hopes that the US officials will be able to prevent any “major disasters”.
Socialistisk Folkeparti was more dramatic in describing its dismay, with its spokesperson for foreign affairs, Holger K Nielsen, saying that Denmark should rethink its foreign affairs policy so it is no longer tied to the US.
“Donald Trump is a horror scenario that has now become a reality. He is a loose cannon,” Nielsen told TV2 News regarding Trump.
“It will be very dangerous having him as president.”