In an interview with the local Östran/Nyheterna newspaper hours before he announced his decision to step down as leader of the Social Democrats on Saturday, Juholt explained that he has been too late in surrounding himself with a team of dependable people.
“That sort of stability makes me better, and helps me avoid mistakes and be more prepared, I needed that sort of staff earlier,” he told the newspaper.
He wished as well that he had been more forceful in defending his decision not to participate in a televised party leaders debate on Sveriges Television after being placed beside Sweden Democrat head Jimmie Åkesson, especially since Juholt believes debating is one of his strong points.
His third mistake stems from the housing allowance scandal that emerged last spring shortly after he took over as party leader whereby tax payer money went to defray the rent of his girlfriend’s Stockholm-area apartment.
“I regret that we, or I, didn’t just take the lift down to whoever was responsible and said, ‘fix this’,” he told the newspaper.
“Clearly I’m upset that we, or I, didn’t deal with it right away. God only knows what would have happened, how history would have been written if I’d seen to it that we got a clear ruling.”
Juholt said he has “no thoughts whatsoever” about how will succeed him after his record-short tenure as Social Democrat party leader.
He emphasized to the newspaper that the decision to step down was one he took on his own and that no one on the party’s executive committee demanded he resign.
When asked about his own future, Juholt reiterated that he remains an MP for Kalmar County and that he hasn’t had a chance to think of what he can do but hopes to “become something useful to the new leadership.”