Chairperson of the Finns Party Riikka Purra addressed the party faithful at an election-night event held in Helsinki on Sunday, 28 January 2024. Purra told YLE that many Finns Party supporters could find it difficult to pick their favourite in the upcoming run-off round between Alexander Stubb (NCP) and Pekka Haavisto (Greens). (Emmi Korhonen – Lehtikuva)

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SUPPORTERS of the Finns Party could play a decisive role in the second round of the presidential elections, a run-off between Alexander Stubb (NCP) and Pekka Haavisto (Greens).

Jussi Halla-aho, the candidate of the populist right-wing party, received 19.0 per cent of the almost 3,250,000 votes cast in the first round of the elections, falling about 220,000 votes or 6.8 percentage points short of a place in the second round.

Minister of Finance Riikka Purra (PS) on Sunday declined to express her backing to either of the two remaining candidates, estimating that the second round could prove a tough choice for many supporters of the Finns Party.

“It looks like it’ll be the green-red candidate against a liberal-right candidate, so it’ll be very interesting. I’d venture that deciding which to vote for will be hard for many Finns Party members,” she commented to YLE.

Altogether 47 per cent of people who voted in the first round will have to vote for a new candidate in the second round.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT

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