The Finnish presidential race is gradually heating up. Last Thursday, Paavo Lipponen, the Former Prime Minister and Speaker of Parliament, announced that he is seeking the nomination of the Social Democratic Party in next year’s elections. The next presidential elections is held in January 2012.
So far the only official party nominee in the presidential race is MP Pekka Haavisto of the Green League. Sauli Niinistö has already confirmed that he is seeking nomination of the National Coalition Party. Niinistö is the former Minister of Finance, and he was the presidential candidate of the National Coalition Party in 2006 elections. Also the Centre Party’s Paavo Väyrynen is seeking his party’s nomination.
In the polls, Niinistö is well ahead of rest of the pack in the upcoming presidential race. According to a poll by Yle, the Finnish Broadcasting Corporation, if the elections would be held now, Niinistö would win 60 per cent of the vote, which would give him the presidency already in the first round.
A separate poll by Yle, published on Friday, shows that the Finnish Nationalist Party is still the biggest party in Finland, with 22 percent support. The National Coalition Party would have 21.4 percent of the current votes, and The Social Democratic Party 19.8 percent.