While it’s no surprise that Perussuomalaiset (PS)* Jussi Halla-aho was the clear winner against Sampo Terho 949 votes against 629, the big question is how the PS’ government coalition partners Center Party and National Coalition Party (NCP) will digest Halla-aho’s victory.
Halla-aho will take over as chairman after Timo Soini led the party for 20 years.
A number of NCP politicians like forthcoming Helsinki Mayor Jan Vapaavuori was quoted as saying that his party cannot be in the same government where Halla-aho is PS chairman. “It’s clear for me that the National Coalition Party cannot be in the same government with Halla-aho’s PS,” Vapaavuori was quoted as saying in tabloid Iltalehti. “It’s important to defend liberal democracy. The PS have to decide for themselves.”
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NCP chairman Petteri Orpo has made similar statements about Halla-aho.
While Orpo and Vapaavuori have made it clear that it would be difficult to be in the same government with Halla-aho, don’t be surprised if everything will continue as normal after the new PS chairman meets Prime Minister Juha Sipilä on Monday.
That is the way white privilege works.
Moreover, why would Sipilä want a government crisis on his hands because of one person who is openly Islamophobic and was convicted for ethnic agitation? Hasn’t the Center Party and NCP already been in government with a party that has built its power base on anti-immigration and especially anti-Islam rhetoric?
We’ll be wiser on Monday but don’t hold your breath.
* The official translation to Finnish of the Perussuomalaiset (PS) party is the Finns Party. In our opinion, it is not only a horrible translation, but one that is misguided. A direct translation of Perussuomalaiset in English would be something like “basic” or “fundamental Finn.” Such terms like the Finns Party of True Finns promote as well in our opinion nativist nationalism and racism. We, therefore, at Migrant Tales prefer to use in our postings the Finnish name of the party once and thereafter the acronym PS.