Sneakers, No Ties, No Respect for Alþingi Skip to content

Sneakers, No Ties, No Respect for Alþingi

Sneakers and the lack of ties are to blame for the public’s lack of respect for Alþingi, the Icelandic parliament. This is the opinion of Progressive Party MP Vigdís Hauksdóttir, according to

Vigdís was interviewed on Útvarp Saga radio station on Friday where she expressed concern that members of parliament are losing the respect of the Icelandic nation since they started dressing more casually than before. She spoke about the “sneakerization” of Alþingi.

“I’ve often said that Alþingi has been ‘sneakerized,’ unfortunately,” she told Útvarp Saga, and no one has criticized members of parliament for making speeches in sneakers. She attributes the dwindling respect for Althing to MPs’ lack of respect for their jobs, as evidenced by their way of dressing.

It all started with the repeal of a rule requiring male MPs to wear a tie for work, she stated. “That was a step backwards. Then it’s really hard to set a new limit once you’ve given in, where should you stop?” ske asked. In her opinion, “A person who doesn’t respect the MPs’ job shouldn’t run for parliament.”

When PM Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson, who chairs the Progressive Party, met with President Barack Obama in 2013, he was wearing one sneaker and one dress shoe due to a foot infection.

A Gallup poll conducted in March this year found that only 18 percent of respondent had much faith in Alþingi.

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