The government will be a centre-right government including three of the four large political parties: the Centre party, the True Finns and the National Coalition party. This is the first time the True Finns are in government and as in several European states a case of when a populist radical right parties contributes to the making of a centre-right government.
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The economic recession characterises the Finnish parliamentary elections that are held on Sunday April 19. The political parties compete about the support of the voters by promising economic austerity during the upcoming legislature.
The Finnish voters were called to the ballot boxes for the third time in little more than a year on Sunday, October 28th. It was the local elections’ turn. The question on everybody’s minds was whether the True Finns would reprise their success in the parliamentary election.
Sauli Niinistö, a former finance minister and speaker of the parliament from the conservative National Coalition party received 62,7 per cent of the votes, a result which came as no surprise. Sauli Niinistö has throughout the entire presidential campaign been clear on how the role of the new president is to be played. Since the president has a direct mandate from the people he is entitled to engage also in other policy domains than those prescribed in the Finnish constitution.
When the voters go to the polls for the second round of the Finnish presidential election on Sunday February 5, the ultimate winner will be destined for a significantly weakened presidential office. The role of the future president was of the main issues during the first round of electoral campaign and will be further debated during the upcoming week between the two finalists.
The first round of the Finnish presidential elections last Sunday both fulfilled expectations and offered surprising results. Sauli Niinistö, the candidate of the National Coalition party, was as expected given the greatest number of votes. The competition about the second ticket to the presidential final turned out to be a much more exciting and a close race than expected.
Immediately after the Finnish parliamentary elections on April 17, which resulted in a smashing victory for the populist True Finns Party, but left the National Coalition Party with the largest number of seats in Parliament, most observers had expected that the three largest parties would form the new government. But after a couple of weeks it became evident that this would not work.
The Finnish Parliamentary elections of, which were held on April 17, resulted in a dramatic victory for a populist party, the True Finns, which increased its representation from 4 to 39 seats, and a big defeat for the Center Party of Prime Minister Mari Kiviniemi. The leader of the National Coalition Party, which despite losing six seats, Finance Minister Jyrki Katainen is expected to form the new government.
The Finnish version of populism is known in the vernacular as “Vennamoism,” after the colorful founder and long-time leader of the Finnish Rural Party, Veikko Vennamo. Although Finnish populism has been pronounced dead over and over again, it has always managed to rise again and reinvent itself. The high polling numbers of the True Finns in the lead-up to the forthcoming Finnish general election in April indicate that populism in Finland is once again making a comeback as a political force to reckon with.
The Decision-in-Principle (DiP) in 2002 to build a fifth nuclear power plant made Finland the center of attention when the nuclear power industry began to see its chances. Finland is the first country to have made a decision on final storage of nuclear waste. Finland is also the only Nordic country in which energy consumption is rising.