| Mona Sahlin |
|Born||Mona Ingeborg Andersson|
Sollefteå, Västernorrland County
|Member of||WEF/Global Leaders for Tomorrow/1993|
|Party||Swedish Social Democratic Party|
Swedish Social Democrat politician. Her political career rebounded from a deep low after she participated in the 1996 Bilderberg conference, and she almost became Prime Minister.
Interestingly, she participated in the 1996 Bilderberg conference after having been disgraced as having used government credit cards for personal expenses. Her career rebounded after that, and she became leader of the party and almost Prime Minister.
Sahlin was a Member of Parliament, representing Stockholm County, from 1982 to 1996 and again from 2002 to 2011. She has also held various ministerial posts in the Swedish government from 1990 to 1991, from 1994 to 1995 and from 1998 to 2006.
Sahlin was elected new leader of the Social Democratic Party on 17 March 2007, succeeding Göran Persson who resigned as leader following the defeat in the 2006 general election. Sahlin is the first female leader of the Swedish Social Democratic Party and became in 2011 the first since Claes Tholin in 1907 to leave that position without having served as Prime Minister of Sweden. In 2012, her successor Håkan Juholt joined her as the second now living person to do so. On 14 November 2010, following another electoral defeat for the Social Democrats, she announced her intent to step down as party chairman, which she did in early 2011.
The Toblerone affair
In October 1995, the newspaper Expressen following an investigation led by Christian Democratic Spanish-Swedish Public Auditor Carlos Medina de Rebolledo (and presumably arranged by someone not wanting her in the party leadership) revealed that Sahlin, who was then serving as Deputy Prime Minister and was widely seen as the main candidate to succeed Ingvar Carlsson as Prime Minister, had charged more than 50,000 Swedish kronor for private expenses on her working charge card, which was only for working expenses.
At a news conference she admitted that she had used a Government credit card to buy groceries. She further confessed to having failed to pay 19 parking tickets and several bills for her children's day care on time. Later, she apologized in a Stockholm newspaper.
A preliminary investigation was initiated by the chief prosecutor Jan Danielsson, as a result of the transactions, and was closed in early 1996 when it came to the conclusion that there was no infringement. She eventually paid the bills (and an extra of 15,000 kronor) to the Treasury.
Several in the party that I counted as my friends slandered me, lied about me and betrayed when I most needed their support. In that moment, I could have started to hate those who prevented me from getting the finest job a Social Democrat can hold. But I chose a different strategy. Every time I met those who hurt me, I smiled - and the less I liked the person, the bigger the smile. I intended that no one would see me sneaking along the walls like a bitter, resentful and hateful woman. Instead, I wanted to emerge stronger from this difficult time.
Event Participated in
|Bilderberg/1996||30 May 1996||2 June 1996||Canada|
|The 44th Bilderberg, held in Canada|
- Holmen, Christian (13 October 1995). "A long series of loans and debts (En lång rad av lån och skulder)".