The past election period has been demanding for the government. Many commentators consider the sitting government as one of the worst in the Finnish history. The economic situation of Finland is gloomy. The government has failed to implement each and every one of its planned large-scale reforms. Out of the original six parties only four are left, after the Left Alliance and the Greens quit the government in 2014. The instability of the government increased after these two junior partners had left it.
The game about the next government is still almost completely open. The only thing which is nearly certain is that the Centre Party, currently in the opposition, will be the biggest winner and will therefore form the government. But with whom?
The main options for a majority government are:
1. Three out of four big parties, which are the Centre Party (centre-right), the National Coalition Party (centre-right), the Social Democrats and the True Finns (populist right).
2. Two out of four big parties plus some smaller parties.
Option 1. a) Two centre-right parties and the True Finns. Conceivable, but can the True Finns really be trusted on the Euro issue? Wouldn’t they try to push through an even tighter immigration policy?
Option 1. b) Two centre-right parties and the Social Democrats. This option would mean a political suicide for the Social Democrats, which already have seriously sinking support figures.
Option 1. c) The Centre Party, the Social Democrats and the True Finns. Conceivable, but again, can the True Finns really be trusted on the Euro and migrant issues?
Option 2. a) The Centre Party, the Social Democrats, the Left Alliance, the Greens and the Swedish Party (+possibly the Christian Democrats). Highly conceivable, if the Centre Party wants to turn to the left rather than right. The problem may be the proposed social security index cuts by the Centre Party against the opposition to this by the Left Alliance.
Option 2. b) The Centre Party, the Social Democrats, the Greens and the Swedish Party. Conceivable, but the Social Democrats might feel lonely in this company, therefore 2. a) might be preferable from their point of view.
It is remarkable that the Centre Party leader tries to avoid strict stances in almost every issue, thus keeping the game open to every direction. One might consider this as a problem from the voters’ perspective, however a system based on coalition governments across the block line is bound to lead to this kind of phenomena.