Finland Prime Minister Ousted as Conservatives Secure Tight Vote

by Madison Thomas
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On Sunday, Finland held an election for their national Parliament. The country’s main conservative party won the election and the right-wing populists (people who don’t like change) came in second. Prime Minister Sanna Marin’s Social Democratic Party didn’t win – so she won’t be Prime Minister anymore.

The National Coalition Party got the highest amount of votes with 20.8%, followed by The Finns at 20.1%. The Social Democrats were close behind at 19.9% with all the votes counted in Finland’s election. No single party had enough votes to form a government on their own, as 2,400 candidates from 22 different parties were competing for 200 seats in parliament!

Petteri Orpo, the happy leader of the National Coalition Party, announced that they will form a new government in Finland. He said this while he was surrounded by his supporters who were gathered at a restaurant in Helsinki.

Sanna Marin, who is a 37-year-old leader in Europe, has been widely praised for her encouragement of Ukraine and her help to Finland’s successful application of joining NATO. Another 53-year-old Finnish leader, Orpo, promised that the country will still stand strong with Ukraine even when he takes over.

At the NCP victory event, Orpo said that they stand with Ukraine and will do whatever it takes to help them because they are fighting for us. Additionally, he said that Vladimir Putin should give up and leave Ukraine because he will not win against them.

Finland recently took a major step closer to joining NATO. Turkey and Hungary signed papers allowing Finland to officially join the alliance. The Finnish Parliament has 48 members from NCP party, 46 members from The Finns which focuses mostly on anti-immigration policies, and 43 members from the Social Democrats led by Marin.

Observers say that the result of the election in Finland is changing the political situation in the country. The nation will likely now have a new right wing government with some nationalist ideas. This government will replace the previous left-wing Cabinet, led by Prime Minister Marin since 2019.

In the upcoming days, talks led by the NCP (National Coalition Party) are set to begin so a majority of votes in Parliament can be secured for this new government.

“I believe protecting Finland’s tradition of talking to all political parties and finding the best possible way for our country is important,” said Orpo.

He then added, “We should be an active member in the European Union, strengthen our connection with NATO-Finland, and make sure that we boost our economy, forming new jobs and having a good success in finances. These things are incredibly vital so they must become part of the national agenda.”

Marin’s team has a plan for the economy in Finland, but the conservatives do not agree with it and won’t work together on it.

Orpo talked a lot about Finland’s rising debt and the need to save money during his election campaign. NCP wants to work with The Finns because both parties have similar ideas about developing Finland’s economy, though there are differences in climate and EU matters.

Russia’s attack against Ukraine made Finland decide to join NATO in May 2022. Although this was a big change, it didn’t become an important topic during the elections because everyone agreed with joining NATO. Soon, Finland will be part of NATO and the European Union. The people who voted in this election were 71.9%, which is slightly lower than the last election in 2019.

Two people who live in Helsinki, Kostya Manenkov and David Keyton, helped out with this report.

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