Sunday, January 15, 2006

Second round for all Finns, please

Tarja Halonen
Originally uploaded by greenpointlife.
Today was election day in Finland. Luckily we shall have a second round because the current president Tarja Halonen got only 46,4 % of the votes.

I say only because her popularity came dramatically down during the last weeks. It is rather clear that she will be elected but I still think it was brilliant that it turned into a decent fight. I found it really odd that Halonen's campaign chief said publicly that Finns could have saved a lot of taxpayers' money by selecting her on the first round. There were also several commentaries in left-oriented media saying that Finns would have a historical opportunity to select a president on the first round. Historicaly opportunity to do what?

I shall vote for Halonen on the second round, that is for sure. But I found it alarming that there was a strong tendency in the campaign to de-politicise the elections.

Oh, by the way: we are not an insignificant country. BBC World covered the Finnish elections saying that the election debates were dominated by the neutral country's relationship with NATO.


maria said...

I`ve found these elections more open and a better venue for real democracy, than they were six years ago.And people still got the power: they CHOSE second round.

And Green Party candidate beat that fundamentalist nationalist loonie. I`ll drink my second round to that!

TyskJohan said...

Not fair! I wanna vote for a president too! (Ooops, does that make me a republican [in the scandinavian sense]?)