Geopolitics & World-affairs

Sanna Marine Conceded Defeat In The General Election In Finland

Finland will have a new Prime Minister after Sanna Marine lost her election with 19.9% of the vote to her opponent, Petteri Orpo of the National Coalition Party, who received 20.8% of the vote

On April 2, 2023, Finland, one of Europe's Nordic nations, held a parliamentary election to choose the country's prime minister. In this election, the incumbent prime minister Sanna Marine's Socialist Democrats lost to the centre-right National Coalition Party. 

The centre-right National Coalition Party(NCP) was led by Petteri Orpo, who served as the leader of the NCP since 2016. He previously served Finland on different occasions: He was the deputy PM of the nation from 2017 to 2019, and before that, from 2014 to 2015, he was Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, and from 2015 to 2016, he was Minister of the Interior. 

In this election, his party, National Coalition Party(NCP) secured the highest vote share with 20.8% of the total vote, while another right-wing party, the Finns Party, came second with a 20.1% vote share. On the other hand, Sanna Marine's Social Democrats secured the third spot with a 19.9% vote share. 

Sanna Marine was only 34 years old when she became Prime Minister of Finland in 2019, making her the country's and the world's youngest Prime Minister. Although she was not the Social Democrats' leader in the 2019 parliamentary election, Antti Rinne fought the election and formed government after forming an alliance with the Centre Party, Green League, Left Alliance, and Swedish People's Party; however, he was forced to resign as Prime Minister due to a political scandal regarding the Finnish postal service. After Mr Rinne's resignation, Sanna Marine became the world's youngest serving Prime Minister.

During her tenure, Sanna Marine run her government in a spectacular fashion. She led her country smoothly through the Covid pandemic, and her country also submitted a NATO candidature in 2022; Finland is now on its way to becoming a NATO member. 

However, during the time of Covid, a video of her singing, dancing, and drinking at a party went viral on social media; and she has since become a polarising figure among Finns. This is one of the main reasons for her defeat, and she also took a strong stance against Russia due to the ongoing conflict, almost putting the country on the path of another conflict.

Although her party, the Social Democrats, finished third with 19.9% of the vote, her party gained three seats in this election, winning 43 seats compared to 40 seats in 2019. Sanna Marine lost her election because Social Democrat's alliance partners, left aligned Centre Party, Left Alliance, and Greens, failed to repeat their 2019 success. 

The Centre Party won 23 seats compared to 31 in 2019, the Greens won 13 seats compared to 21 last year, and the Left Alliance won 11 seats compared to 16 in 2019. Therefore, Sanna Marine tried her hardest to win the election, but her alliances' poor performance cost her the Prime Ministership. 

Sanna Marine conceded defeat to Petteri Orpo after receiving her results. Petri Orpo also requires assistance from other coalition members in the 200-member house. To win the Prime Ministership, he needs the support of some other right-wingers, such as Finns and minor coalition partners. 

The voter turnout in this election was 71.9%, which was 0.9% lower than in 2019, and the voting system used to elect the country's prime minister is Proportional Representation, which is completely different from India's First Past the Post system.

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