Danish Christian Democrat leader criticises own party's abortion stance and leaves politics


Northern Europe


Jens Rohde. Photo Facebook

The only MP for the Danish Christian Democrats is leaving politics. After the upcoming elections, Jens Rohde, who has been critical of his own party's abortion stance, will not return to parliament.

"I want to do something different with my life than politics. It is a decision that has been underway for a long time,” says Jens Rohde to Ekstra Bladet.

According to Ekstra Bladet's information, there has recently been a heated debate within the Kristendemokaterne (KD) about its abortion policy.

Rohde denies that the party's abortion policy has contributed to the decision to say goodbye to KD but tells the newspaper that he has repeatedly met opposition to his view of women's right to abortion. "I stand firm on the woman's right to abortion. I said that too when I signed up. And there is no doubt that there have been many discussions since I stated my view on abortion on 8 March, International Women's Day. To me, the woman's right to abortion is inviolable. Then others must explain if they have a different point of view that they do not think so."


According to Rohde, who says he has raised the issue of abortion within the party leadership, the right to abortion has been "culturally rewarding", adding that it has had a "huge impact" on our equality. "And compared to countries that restrict abortions, we have fewer abortions. And fewer deaths among women who have abortions."

Rohde, who acknowledges that his views have met with criticism within the KD, will put forward a motion for a resolution "that I believe the government should work to have the sentence in which the right to abortion is made conditional on the woman's life and health in danger being taken out. So, we simply conclude that women have a fundamental right to abortion."

"For me, it is important that we get that right spread because so many women are still dying from unwanted pregnancies. Because we are successful with it in Denmark, we must then go out with the cornerstone of equality and fight for the rights of all women", Rohde says to the online newspaper Altinget, which reports that the KD-leader has proposed the resolution outside the party leadership.

"As things develop worldwide, I think Denmark should speak with a very clear voice on this point. We are proof that the number of abortions can be relatively low when women have the right to end their pregnancy, unlike in other countries," says Rohde, who announced last Friday that he would leave politics.


The discussion that Rohde has initiated within the KD touches the party's heart. The KD was founded in 1970 under the name Kristeligt Folkeparti (Christian People's Party) in protest the legalisation of abortion and pornography. The Christian Democrats took part in the 1971 Danish parliamentary elections for the first time but failed to win a seat. However, in the 1973 elections, they made their breakthrough by winning seven seats in the Folketing. A tremendous success in the party's history followed in 1975 when the party won nine seats. Until 1994, the party was continuously represented in parliament.

Rohde. Photo Wikimedia

Jens Rohde began his political career when he was elected to the Folketing for the liberal party Venstre in 1998. In 2006 the former journalist and sports commentator left his seat in the Folketing Hall. Still, he returned to politics in 2009 as an elected member of the European Parliament for the Left. After being elected to parliament for Venstre for the second time, the politician resigned in 2015. He then jumped over to the Radical Left, for which he was elected to the Folketing in 2019. But the MP could only sit here for two years before he disagreed with the party's line and, in 2021, switched to the Christian Democrats.

According to Berlingske's political commentator Bent Winther, Jens Rohde has been a prominent profile in Danish politics, Danish daily Berlingske writes. "But he has also been very restless, to use a nice word. He was confused with the Liberal Party, he was confused with the Radical Left, and now he has also left the Christian Democrats," says Bent Winther.



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