Halla Tómasdóttir Elected President of Iceland

Halla Tómasdóttir will be the seventh President of Iceland, RÚV has declared.

The 55-year-old businesswoman and CEO of B Team had a significant lead in all districts this morning when 191,065 votes had been counted. She had received 65,669 votes, a 34.6% share 0f the total votes, leading second-place Katrín Jakobsdóttir, former Prime Minister and leader of the Left-Green Movement, by a significant margin.

“I think people want to discuss our society and take part in it,” Halla said at her campaign celebration in the early hours this morning. “I feel the energy of the people who have joined me on this journey.”

Halla surged in recent weeks

Katrín Jakobsdóttir, who was ahead in the polls for much of the campaign, had 47,398 votes, or 25%. Director General of Iceland’s National Energy Authority Halla Hrund Logadóttir followed with 28,636 votes, or 15.1%, with comedian and former mayor Jón Gnarr and Professor Baldur Þórhallsson in fourth and fifth place.

I “want to congratulate her and I know she’ll be a good President,” Katrín said when Halla’s victory was becoming clear.

Three of the six voting districts had completed their count at the time of this writing, while many absentee ballots were yet to be counted. RÚV analysts, however, considered it highly unlikely that the results could change, as Halla Tómasdóttir’s lead was significant.

Halla was only polling at around 5% in early May, but gained traction in recent weeks. She previously ran for President in 2016, coming in second with 28% of the vote.

A closer election expected

Outgoing President Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, who triumphed over Halla in 2016, said last night that her message had obviously been well received by the voting public. He added that Katrín had faced tough questions about how she entered the race when she resigned as Prime Minister and leader of the Left-Green Movement in the middle of her term to run for President.

“Most of those who spoke publicly about the election race expected it to be closer,” Guðni said. His term comes to an end on August 1, when Halla and her family move into Bessastaðir, the President’s residence on the Álftanes peninsula. She will be the second woman to hold the office after Vigdís Finnbogadóttir, who was the first woman in the world to be democratically elected as president in 1980.

“I only see one team in Iceland and that’s Icelanders,” Halla told Iceland Review in an interview during the campaign. “[We] can make Bessastaðir the home for our national compass.”

Icelanders Head to the Polls

Icelanders will vote for a new President today. Polling places have opened and will remain open until 10 PM tonight in larger municipalities. Nearly 270,000 people are eligible to vote and must bring personal identification, such as a passport or driver’s license, to receive their ballot.

Two frontrunners, new poll suggests

Former Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir and businesswoman Halla Tómasdóttir are neck and neck according to the latest poll. Halla has surged in recent weeks and is polling at 24% according to a Gallup poll, RÚV reports. Katrín is polling at just under 26%, a statistically insignificant lead, the pollster noted.

The election takes place in one round, so the new President could be elected with only around a quarter of the total vote. Halla Hrund Logadóttir is polling third with 19%, Baldur Þórhallsson fourth with just under 15%, and Jón Gnarr fifth with 8%. A total of 12 candidates are in the running.

New term begins in August

Outgoing President Guðni Th. Jóhannesson announced on 1 January that he would not seek reelection after serving two terms in office. He will serve until 1 August, when the newly elected President assumes the office. The President has limited political powers, but carries out ceremonial duties and is seen as having significant influence in Icelandic society.

Katrín and Halla Neck and Neck in Most Recent Presidential Poll

Halla Hrund Logadóttir, Halla Tómasdóttir, and Katrín Jakobsdóttir

Just two days until Iceland’s presidential election and Katrín Jakobsdóttir and Halla Tómasdóttir are neck and neck in Maskína’s latest poll, released today. Both received 24.1% support in the poll, conducted between May 27 and May 30. This presidential race has been a close and exciting one, with a record number of candidates, several of whom still appear to have a shot at the presidency. The poll was conducted for Vísir, Stöð 2, and Bylgjan.

Katrín’s following shrinks, Halla’s grows

While Katrín’s following dropped slightly from Maskína’s last poll, released on May 23, Halla Tómasdóttir’s rose significantly. The third-place candidate, according to the poll’s results, is Halla Hrund Logadóttir, with 18.4%. Halla Hrund also saw a rise in her following compared to last week’s poll. The top three candidates are followed by Baldur Þórhallsson with 15.4% support, Jón Gnarr with 9.9% support and Arnar Þór Jónsson with 5.0% support. The remaining six candidates have a combined 3.2%.

Many voters decide last minute

Ólafur Þ. Harðarson, professor emeritus in political science who has decades of experience leading research on Icelandic elections, stated that this Presidential race is the most exciting one since Vigdís Finnbogadóttir was narrowly elected in 1980 to become the first democratically-elected female head of state in the world. Polls have shown significant shifts in following in recent weeks, and according to Ólafur, research has shown an increasing number of voters make up their minds last-minute.

Read more about Iceland’s 2024 presidential candidates.

Presidential Frontrunners Neck and Neck

Halla Hrund Logadóttir, Halla Tómasdóttir, and Katrín Jakobsdóttir

Presidential candidates Halla Hrund Logadóttir, Halla Tómasdóttir, and Katrín Jakobsdóttir all enjoy over 20% voter support according to the latest Prósent poll conducted for Morgunblaðið. All three measured between 20.1% to 21% support, a statistically negligible difference considering the margin of error for all three figures lies between 18.1% to 23.2%. The closeness in the running makes for an exciting election day on June 1, where a handful of votes could potentially determine the outcome.

The polling took place between last Tuesday, May 21 and yesterday, May 26. Halla Hrund scored highest at 21% while Halla Tómasdóttir enjoyed 20.2% support and Katrín Jakobsdóttir 20.1%. Katín’s support waned slightly as compared to the previous week’s poll, while both Halla Hrund and Halla Tómasdóttir gained following. The fourth most popular candidate in the poll is Baldur Þórhallsson, with 16.9%, followed by Jón Gnarr with 11.4% and Arnar Þór Jónsson with 6.4%.

Respondents were not only asked who they plan to vote for but also who they believed would win the election to become Iceland’s next president. Nearly 45% believe that Katrín Jakobsdóttir is most likely to win the election, double that of the next candidate, Halla Hrund. Fewer believed that Baldur or Halla Tómasdóttir would win the election than said they would vote for those candidates.

Fewer voting in advance

Advance voting stations have been open since May 3 in Iceland, and over 16,300 have already voted, more than 10,600 of them in the capital area, RÚV reports. That is fewer than voted in advance in Iceland’s last presidential election, in 2020. However, it bears noting that the last election took place in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, when more people aimed to avoid crowds on election day. The date of the presidential election, which used to take place at the end of June, has also been shifted to the beginning of the month, making it likely that fewer voters will be away on summer vacation on election day.

Read more about the five highest-polling presidential candidates.

The Battle for Bessastaðir

Bessastaðir, the unassuming estate on the Álftanes peninsula, will soon have a new inhabitant. Its current occupant, President of Iceland Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, chose not to seek a third term and will soon vacate the residence along with First Lady Eliza Reid and their family.

The election for president of Iceland is set for June 1 and is shaping up to be closely contested. With 12 people in the running, the highest number of candidates in history, and only one round of voting, the winner might triumph with a significant minority of the vote.

The office of president carries limited political powers, but the president plays a role in forming coalition governments and has the authority to submit any law passed by Alþingi, Iceland’s Parliament, to a national referendum. Former president Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson was the only Icelandic president to ever exercise this power, declining to sign new legislation on three occasions during his 20 year tenure.

Despite the president’s limited political authority, the office is seen as influential in the public eye and something of a uniting force in Icelandic society. The president carries out ceremonial duties and addresses the nation on important holidays, after natural disasters, or during times of strife. Former president Vigdís Finnbogadóttir became an international symbol of gender equality when she was elected in 1980, the first woman to become a democratically elected head of state, while outgoing president Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, a history professor, was seen as a stabilising force after a political scandal shook the nation just before his election in 2016.

Iceland Review spoke with the five candidates who have regularly been polling above 5 per cent about their views on the office and the issues they hope to highlight.

The other candidates are lawyer and former judge Arnar Þór Jónsson; model and entrepreneur Ásdís Rán Gunnarsdóttir; businessman, activist, and repeat presidential candidate Ástþór Magnússon; fisherman Eiríkur Ingi Jóhannsson; Data Protection Commissioner Helga Þórisdóttir; actress Steinunn Ólína Þorsteinsdóttir; and economist Viktor Traustason. Iceland Review encourages prospective voters to familiarise themselves with all the candidates before casting their ballots.

Baldur Þórhallsson

Professor of Political Science at the University of Iceland

As a professor of political science specialising in the affairs of small states, Baldur Þórhallsson has long been a mainstay as an analyst in Icelandic media. “I think it’s a misunderstanding when people say that the president has no power or influence,” he says. “Vigdís spearheaded the issues of children, nature conservation, equality, and the Icelandic language. Ólafur Ragnar was a leader in international affairs, speaking up for Iceland’s interests abroad and establishing our country as the centre of Arctic policy and a guiding light in the North Atlantic. It’s good that the president’s powers are not tested frequently. But when it happens during governmental crises or when Alþingi oversteps, it’s very important who’s at Bessastaðir.”

He maintains that the president should never be codependent with the government or ruling forces in society, as the office-holder needs to be able to pull the “emergency brake,” as he calls it. “It’s very important that Alþingi knows that the president is keeping a watchful eye on it. If the Parliament were to step out of line with regards to fundamental human rights, freedom of speech, major changes to public administration, joining the European Union, or even establishing a military, the president should put these issues to a public vote.”

“I think it’s a misunderstanding when people say that the president has no power or influence.”

As president, Baldur says he would foreground the issues of children and youth, with a focus on increased reading comprehension, combating the decline in the mental health of young people, and supporting their possibility to flourish on their own terms. When it comes to international issues, he feels that there is untapped potential for the presidency. “The president can open doors abroad for Icelandic people, businesses, and NGOs,” he says. “We should harness this. I’d like to apply what I’ve researched for 30 years at the University of Iceland, how small states can have influence on the international stage. This means prioritising issues and working with our allies.”

During his candidacy, Baldur has highlighted his relationship with his husband Felix Bergsson, a popular actor and media personality. “The president’s partner can have great influence on public discourse, like we’ve seen with Guðrún Katrín, Dorrit, and Eliza,” he says, listing the three latest First Ladies. “The issues that Felix and I want to prioritise are all highly political and calling them political does not make them less important. They’re ubiquitous across party lines and the president should never favour a political party. I think we diminish the office of the president and their work if we say that the office isn’t political. It’s political when it comes to our national discourse and also with regard to the president’s role in administration.”

If elected, Baldur would become the first openly gay democratically elected head of state in history. He acknowledges the significance of this. “It would be a milestone in the advancement of human rights,” he admits. “Just like when Icelanders were fortunate enough to be the first to vote in a woman as head of state. Felix and I want to use our experience of 30 years of human rights campaigning, for the rights of LGBTQ+ people, gender equality, and other human rights issues.”

Halla Hrund Logadóttir

Director General of Iceland’s National Energy Authority and Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy at Harvard University

A late entrant to the presidential race, Halla Hrund Logadóttir quickly became an unexpected frontrunner. With a background in political science and a teaching career at Harvard University, she became director general of Iceland’s National Energy Authority in 2021. “The throughline in my work has been Icelandic interests,” she says. “In my work for Arctic Initiative at Harvard, we focused on marine issues, energy, and the environment. I helped found Project Girls for Girls, which is based on volunteer work for equality. And I’ve also worked in the cultural field. My main talent is bringing people together, supporting them, and helping things grow.”

Unlike the other leading candidates, Halla Hrund has never run for public office before. “We need to focus on the things that bring us together, build empathy and optimism, and our endurance to face challenges,” she says. “This office should be elevated over petty political infighting. I’m not from the world of politics, but I think it’s important that the president understands politics and governance like I do, coming from my role with the National Energy Authority and my work at Harvard, but the president should never be partial to private interests. They should bring people together, but stand tall if the national interest is under threat.”

“I’m not from the world of politics, but I think it’s important that the president understands politics and governance like I do.

When asked about her role models for president, Halla Hrund says that while all of Iceland’s previous presidents made their mark in different days, she has role models from different fields, such as teachers, parents, and colleagues. “When we look at the history of Iceland, we see people coming together to do their part, no matter what their role or position in society was. This is a way to build empathy, connection, and joy. I think we need to uphold these values, especially now that we have a more diverse society,” she says.

“We’re in the midst of rapid technological upheaval and environmental changes,” Halla Hrund adds. “One of the results is increased isolation in our society. I think it’s important to involve young people to a greater degree. I’d like to see different generations work together. Young people should be involved in all decision-making because we’re shaping their future.”

Halla Tómasdóttir

Businessperson and CEO of The B Team

Halla Tómasdóttir was a runner-up in the 2016 presidential election, receiving 27.9% of the vote. She’s had a long career in business as the founder of female-led investment firm Auður Capital and as an early member of the founding team of Reykjavík University. She’s now the CEO of The B Team, an international nonprofit advocacy group for humane and climate-friendly business practices. “I think I have a strong education, broad career experience, and extensive network to apply to the presidency,” she says. “More importantly, I have a vision of how to use the office to bring together different groups and generations to communicate and collaborate on the many issues we face.”

When Iceland gained independence from Denmark in 1944 and the Icelandic constitution was established, the president replaced the Danish king as head of state, and the office’s role and powers were set in stone. Following the economic crash of 2008, an attempt to rewrite the constitution from the ground up was made with a democratically elected constitutional assembly of 25 people who proposed a draft. Despite public support of its contents, the draft was never ratified by Alþingi and the constitution remains unchanged.

“Our nation went through a beautiful process in writing a new constitution which didn’t get the necessary attention or respect of those in power.”

When asked about the constitution, Halla says that the text on the president should be reformed, along with other clauses.“We could consider a two-round voting system so that the president is elected with majority support,” she says. “Also, the number of references necessary to run for office should better reflect the population today. Only 1,500 signatures from constituents are needed, a number that was decided in 1944 when the population was much smaller. Our nation went through a beautiful process in writing a new constitution which didn’t get the necessary attention or respect of those in power. I think it would’ve helped build trust in society. Without saying whether the new constitution was perfect or not, I think there was a breach of trust when this work, created by elected representatives of the nation in a democratic vote, was cast aside.”

Halla says that she’s interested in the presidency, rather than running for Parliament or local councils, because of the office’s unifying influence. “I only see one team in Iceland and that’s Icelanders,” she emphasises. “I feel like authorities and businesses are stuck in short-term thinking, not just in Iceland, but all over the world. At Bessastaðir, we can think long-term, invite the nation to participate, and form our vision for the future. I participated in the 2009 National Assembly with a good group of people to cement our values after our notorious economic collapse a year earlier. 1,500 Icelanders came together in Laugardalshöll arena to discuss our vision and founding values of our society going forward. A clear vision was formed, based on a sustainable, creative, cohesive society, with our values of honesty, equality, justice, respect, and responsibility. And it didn’t get the proper respect from authorities. But we can make Bessastaðir the home for our national compass.”

Jón Gnarr

Comedian and Former Mayor of Reykjavík

Comedian Jón Gnarr rode the wave of political unrest which followed Iceland’s 2008 banking collapse into office as mayor of Reykjavík with his self-created Best Party. Considered one of the most influential comedic voices of his generation in Iceland, he returned to his career in entertainment, acting, and writing after one term in City Hall.

“I’m just me,” Jón says, when asked about what makes him different from other candidates. “I’m Jón Gnarr. That alone makes me unique. My approach is more based on humour than most. That doesn’t make it any better or worse. I also have a very special connection to the nation and have always had. But one thing makes me different from the frontrunners, that I’m an artist.”

He adds that he’d miss his artistic endeavours if his candidacy were successful, but that he would focus on his new responsibilities. “If I can use comedy or acting in my work as president, I will,” he says. “I’ve considered the possibility of doing so for charity, for example.”

“If I can use comedy or acting in my work as president, I will.”

Jón says that, if elected, he would prefer not to interfere with Alþingi’s work and would only submit very controversial issues to a referendum, such as the establishment of the death penalty. “I have no faith in a dictatorial approach,” he says.

“There seems to be some sort of misinformation regarding the election, especially among young people,” he adds. “The presidency has been presented as if it comes with enormous political powers and maybe people are looking to the USA in this regard. This is built on some misunderstanding of the office, but maybe that’s why this election has become so political. Our former prime minister, Katrín Jakobsdóttir, is running, and people are talking about their political stances and divisive issues. How would this manifest itself practically? If a president says they’ll ‘stand with the marginalised,’ how would they do it besides literally, physically standing there?”

When asked why he doesn’t run for Reykjavík City Council again or Alþingi for that matter, positions of power where a representative can directly impact people’s standard of living, Jón says he’s done with that. “I don’t particularly want to meddle with people’s standard of living,” he says and laughs. “The office of president is different and fortunately free of political strife for the most part and has more to do with forming a friendship with the nation, communicating with foreign parties, and highlighting constructive causes.”

Katrín Jakobsdóttir

Former Prime Minister and Chairperson of the Left-Green Movement

The coalition’s approval ratings dropped sharply amid scandals during its second term, but Katrín retained her personal popularity. As a result, she’d long been rumoured as a candidate for president, and on April 5 she announced that she would resign as Prime Minister and chairperson of her party to run – a decision that necessitated a reshuffling of ministerial posts.

“I’ve worked in politics for a long time and I feel that in some way I’ve completed my work in that arena,” she says, explaining her decision. “Politics are very different from the office of the president, because there are so many different things to deal with. We had a global pandemic, natural disasters, and the implementation of our political agenda. With the presidency, you have a chance to think big picture. This is something that’s concerned me more in recent years, how the world is developing in our times. We’re seeing wars break out, environmental disaster looming, technological advancements at a tremendous pace. These times call for big picture thinking and preserving national unity.”

Katrín has an education in Icelandic studies and is a published crime novel author. She says she’d like to emphasise her background in Icelandic culture and language if elected. “People like to say that the president is a symbol of unity for the nation,” she says. “I prefer to think of the office as a force for unity. The president can make an effort to speak on behalf of different groups in society. We have a large group of inhabitants who were not born in Iceland and the president should acknowledge that. We have a young generation that is inundated with the English language for a good portion of the day. We have sparsely populated areas where people are faced with different conditions than in the capital region. I think the president should apply themselves to have different groups communicate.”

“I’ve worked in politics for a long time and I feel that in some way I’ve completed my work in that arena.”

Katrín says that it would be hard for her to say if any of the laws her government passed should’ve been put to a referendum by President Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, adding that she trusted his judgement in office. “I was in the cabinet when President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson used this option twice on one of the most controversial laws of our time,” she says, referring to the so-called Icesave dispute, when a law on how to reimburse foreign depositors who lost their money during Iceland’s 2008 banking collapse was put to a vote. “I think it was an important step for him to do it, even though I was in government at the time.”

As Prime Minister, Katrín did not propose the adoption of the collectively-drafted constitution, but instead began a process of revision to the constitution by a Parliamentary committee with the aim of adding clauses on environmental and preservation issues and defining natural resources as shared national property. She also proposed amending the section on presidential and executive powers by increasing the number of signatures necessary to run and introducing ranked voting. These proposals were unsuccessful due to opposition from her coalition partners.

“I think that people would rather not see drastic changes to the role of president,” she says. “They care about the office and feel that the president should have some leeway to shape the office as they see fit.”

Halla Tómasdóttir Gains Steam

Halla Tómasdóttir, candidate for president of Iceland

Halla Hrund Logadóttir and Katrín Jakobsdóttir are neck and neck in the race for president of Iceland, according to the latest poll by Gallup. Halla Tómasdóttir, who had been polling below 5% jumps to 11%, RÚV reports.

Baldur in third place

The polling followed a televised debate on 3 May. Halla Hrund, the Director General of Iceland’s National Energy Authority drops in the poll from 36% down to 25% as Katrín, the former prime minister and chairperson of the Left-Green Movement, rises from 23% to 25%.

Baldur Þórhallsson, a professor of political science at the University of Iceland, is firmly in third place with 18%, while Halla Tómasdóttir, a businessperson and former candidate, eclipses Jón Gnarr, a comedian and former mayor of Reykjavík, who is polling at 10%. Other candidates are polling at lower numbers, but Arnar Þór Jónsson, a lawyer and former judge, has reached 6%.

Difference by age and gender

When the polling is broken down by age, gender, education and political views, it becomes clear that Halla Hrund is popular among men, while Baldur is popular among women. Older people are more likely to support Katrín or Halla Hrund, while younger people favour Baldur and Jón.

The election will take place in one round on 1 June.

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Halla Hrund Leads Polls in Presidential Race

Halla Hrund Logadóttir is enjoying a significant lead in Iceland’s ongoing presidential race, with nearly 30% support among voters. Former Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir is in second place with just over 21% and Baldur Þórhallsson in third with just over 20%, though the difference is not considered statistically significant. Former Reykjavík Mayor Jón Gnarr takes fourth place with just under 15%.

Katrín’s support growing

The data is from the most recent weekly poll conducted by Prósent for Morgunblaðið. Halla Hrund showed similar support as in the previous week, whereas Katrín Jakobsdóttir showed increased support after dropping in the polls last week. In an unprecedented move, Katrín resigned as Prime Minister last month in order to run for the post.

Record number of candidates

Morgunblaðið notes that most of the responses were submitted before the televised debate that took place last Friday evening, which may impact current support. Respondents were also asked who they believed was most likely to win the election. Respondents considered Halla Hrund and Katrín to be the most likely winners, with neither favoured over the other in the data.

Iceland’s presidential election will take place on June 1. There are 11 official candidates running, a historic record. Current president Guðni Th. Jóhannesson is not running for reelection.

Katrín and Halla Hrund Level-Pegging in Latest Survey

Katrín and Halla Hrund level-pegging in recent survey.

In a recent survey conducted by the School of Social Sciences at the University of Iceland, Katrín Jakobsdóttir leads with 29.9% of the votes, closely followed by Halla Hrund Logadóttir at 27.6%. Jón Gnarr, whose support was measured at 15-20% in previous polls, is polling at 7.4% according to this new survey.

Katrín, Halla Hrund polling strongly

Katrín Jakobsdóttir leads with 29.9% of the votes in a new poll conducted by the School of Social Sciences at the University of Iceland between April 22 to April 30. Halla Hrund Logadóttir follows closely with 27.6%. However, no statistically significant difference is measured between the two candidates.

This is the first poll released since the candidates were confirmed, although it was partly conducted before their confirmation.

The results mark a noticeable shift from recent surveys by Maskína and Prósent, where support for Katrín had significantly declined: from roughly 31% in the Gallup poll published about two weeks ago to 18% in the Prósent poll. In the University poll, Baldur Þórhallsson’s support sits at 23.6%, which is significantly lower than Halla Hrund, but similar to his ratings in the last two polls.

Jón Gnarr suffers a dip

As noted by RÚV, the key revelation of the survey may revolve around Jón Gnarr, who has been polling at between 15-20% in surveys over the past month. This time, however, his support measures only 7.4%, marking a stark decrease of more than half compared to previous polls.

Other candidates are all polling below 5%: Halla Tómasdóttir would receive 4.5% of the votes if the elections were held now, and Arnar Þór Jónsson would receive 4.1%. Other candidates are polling with or within 1% support, according to the survey.

The poll was conducted before it was clear that Viktor Traustason would be a presidential candidate. The National Electoral Commission initially declared his candidacy invalid, but after the Election Complaints Committee invalidated that decision, the National Electoral Commission deemed his candidacy valid.

Baldur most popular among young voters

Katrín and Baldur enjoy the most support among female voters, with about 30% of them inclined to vote for either of them individually. Men would mostly vote for Katrín and Halla Hrund, with each garnering the support of 30% of male voters according to the survey.

Katrín garners significant support among the oldest voters, with Halla following closely behind. Baldur enjoys the most support among the youngest voters.

Record Number of Presidential Candidates in Iceland

Bessastaðir, official residence of the President of Iceland.

There are 11 official candidates in Iceland’s Presidential election this June 1. The National Electoral Commission has reviewed the documents of all 13 candidates who submitted their endorsements last Friday, ruling two applications as invalid, RÚV reports. The number of official candidates is a record for the country, and includes Katrín Jakobsdóttir, who resigned as Prime Minister in order to run.

Submitted only nine endorsements

Candidates hoping to run in a presidential election in Iceland must collect and submit a minimum of 1,500 endorsements (signatures of support) from all four quadrants of the country. One of the two candidates whose application was deemed invalid had submitted only nine signatures of endorsement. The other was several hundred endorsements short of the minimum.

Read More: How do I become President of Iceland?

Between Iceland’s first presidential election in 1952 until the 2004 election, there were never more than four candidates running for the position, and on two occasions there were just two candidates. Since 2004, the number of candidates in presidential elections has grown. In 2012 there were six official candidates and in 2016 there were nine. In Iceland’s last presidential election, in 2020, there were only two.

The presidential candidates are listed below in alphabetical order:

  • Arnar Þór Jónsson
  • Ásdís Rán Gunnarsdóttir
  • Ástþór Magnússon Wium
  • Baldur Þórhallsson
  • Eiríkur Ingi Jóhannsson
  • Halla Hrund Logadóttir
  • Halla Tómasdóttir
  • Helga Þórisdóttir
  • Jón Gnarr
  • Katrín Jakobsdóttir
  • Steinunn Ólína Þorsteinsdóttir

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New Presidential Challenger, Poll Suggests

Halla Hrund Logadóttir, director general of Iceland’s National Energy Authority and adjunct lecturer in public policy at Harvard university, would receive 26.2% of the vote in the presidential election, according to a new poll by Maskína.

However, the difference between her and two other candidates polling at the top is not statistically significant, RÚV reports.

Four candidates in double digits

Katrín Jakobsdóttir, former prime minister and leader of the Left-Green Movement, is polling at 25.4% and Baldur Þórhallsson, professor of political science, comes in with 21.2% support. Katrín and Baldur have been leading the polls in recent weeks.

Four candidates are polling in double digits, with comedian and former mayor Jón Gnarr polling at 15.2%. Other candidates are polling at under 5%.

Election in just over a month

The presidential election will take place in one round on June 1. Current president Guðni Th. Jóhannesson announced in an address on January 1 that he would not seek re-election after serving two terms. The office of president is mostly ceremonial, but does come with limited political powers.

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