The National Coalition Party (Kokoomus) won Finland’s first regional elections after capturing 21.6% of the votes, according to Yle. Apart from the low 47.5% voter turnout, there were two big surprises: the good showing of the Center Party and the abysmal result by the Perussuomalaiset (PS)*.
During the past decade, much of the PS’ success hinges on Islamophobia and racist soundbites.
Even if the regional election was supposed to be about health care and emergency services, the PS campaigned on high petrol prices at the pumps and anti-Muslim racism.
SDP leader Sanna Marin said that the good result of the Kokoomus, her party, and the Center Party marked a return to the ‘big three’ in Finnish politics after the PS’ good showing during the last decade.
“In my opinion the forecast shows that this election was a return of the big three and the return of traditional politics,” Marin was quoted as saying in Yle News.
Another factor contributing to the PS’s poor showing was Purra’s lack of charisma and racist talking points.