Anna-Maja Henriksson, the chairperson of the Swedish People’s Party, spoke to reporters as she arrived at the House of the Estates in Helsinki on Wednesday, 3 May 2023. The Swedish People’s Party is the only of the four parties involved in the coalition formation talks to have seen its popularity decrease – albeit only marginally – since the parliamentary elections held in early April, suggests a poll by YLE. (Antti Aimo-Koivisto – Lehtikuva)


THE PECKING ORDER between the National Coalition, Finns Party and Social Democrats has stayed unchanged after the parliamentary elections held in Finland on 2 April, indicates a poll by YLE.

Both the National Coalition and Finns Party, the poll found, have seen their popularity increase since the elections, the former by 0.8 percentage points to 21.6 per cent and the latter by 0.5 points to 20.6 per cent.

Support for the Social Democratic Party has not moved from 19.9 per cent.

Tuomo Turja, the research director at Taloustutkimus, stated to the Finnish public broadcasting company that the results are typical for a post-election poll in that they align fairly well with the election results.

Support for the Centre falling by 1.1 points from the elections to 10.2 per cent is indicative of another common trend. “What has happened traditionally is that the party that lost the most in the elections continues on the same trend,” said Turja.

The Green League and Left Alliance share fifth place in the poll after the former gained 0.4 points and the latter 0.5 points to climb to 7.5 per cent.

Even though support for the two left-green parties has rebounded since the elections, Turja cautioned against interpreting it as a sign that those who voted tactically are reaffirming their support for their usual party of choice. The polling data show that an unusually high proportion of respondents – more than 90 per cent – stands by the same party they supported in the elections.

“At least nine in ten of those who voted for a party one month ago think that they’d still vote for that same party,” said Turja. “In that light, the Social Democrats isn’t in a situation where voters who prefer the Greens or Left Alliance are having regrets.”

The Social Democratic Party benefited by far the most from tactical voting in the elections, according to a survey conducted for Toivo Think Tank by Kantar Public. Almost a quarter (23%) of its voters revealed that the party was their secondary choice and received their voice because they tried to ensure or prevent the forming of a certain kind of ruling coalition.

Secondary votes made up an average of 8.7 per cent of the vote share of the other parties.

The think tank is affiliated with the National Coalition.

Turja on Thursday also drew attention to another sign of little mobility among voters: the Social Democrats seems to be unaffected by Prime Minister Sanna Marin’s announcement that she is not seeking re-election at the helm of the party.

The Christian Democrats and Swedish People’s Party have swapped places since the elections, with the former gaining 0.1 points to 4.3 per cent and the latter dropping 0.2 points to 4.1 per cent. The Swedish People’s Party is thereby the only of the four parties involved in the coalition formation negotiations to see its popularity decline since the elections.

The negotiations are being held between the National Coalition, Finns Party, Swedish People’s Party and Christian Democrats.

Taloustutkimus interviewed 2,594 people for the poll between 3 April and 2 May. As many as 2,098 of the respondents were able and willing to reveal which party they would vote for if the elections were held today.

“An unusually high share, nearly 81 per cent stated their preference,” Turja highlighted to YLE.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT