There are four types of elections in Finland.Each Finnish citizen at least 18 years of age has the right to vote in each of the elections, which decide the following: the president, the parliament, the MEPs, and the municipal and city councils.
Finland has a presidential election every six years, in which a President of Finland is elected in two rounds on the basis of a direct popular vote.
Parliamentary elections are held every four years with a system of proportional representation in multiple seat constituencies. Finnish parliamentary elections use the D'Hondt method. Finland has a multi-party system wherein it is uncommon for a single party to achieve a majority in eduskunta; thus most Finnish governments consist of coalitions.
European Parliament elections are held every five years. Finland has 14 seats in the European Parliament.
Municipal elections are held every four years. Municipal elections are held separately in the Municipalities of Åland at the same time as the election of the Parliament of Åland. A new type of election, aluevaalit, was made by the Marin Cabinet in which determines the councils of each of the country's 21 welfare area. The first aluevaalit will be held in 2022.
The president is elected by popular vote for a six-year term. An election was last held January 28, 2018 (there was no second round). See 2018 Finnish presidential election.
The incumbent president Sauli Niinistö won in the first round receiving over 60% of the votes. Green League's candidate Pekka Haavisto came second, followed by Laura Huhtasaari of the Finns Party.
Under Finland's parliamentary system the prime minister can ask the president to dissolve parliament at any time during its 4-year term, which would result in "early" elections. However, this has not occurred in the past two decades and general elections have been held every four years on the third Sunday in March in 1991, 1995, 1999, 2003, and 2007. The 2011 parliamentary elections took place on 17 April 2011. The 2015 parliamentary elections took place on 19 April 2015.
The D'Hondt method of proportional representation, used in Finland, encourages a multitude of political parties and has resulted in many coalition-cabinets. The D'Hondt method, while easy to understand and use, tends to favor large, established political parties. For example: in 2007, there were 2,000 candidates representing 18 different parties (plus independents) running for the 200 seats, and those who were elected came from just eight parties. The Prime Minister of Finland is appointed by the president, based on the vote in the parliamentary elections. Usually the chairman of the biggest party becomes the next prime minister.
In the parliamentary elections of 16 March 2003, there were two dominating parties: the Centre Party got 55 seats and the Social Democratic Party got 53 in the 200-seat Parliament. A new cabinet was formed by the Centre Party and Social Democrats together with the Swedish People's Party.
In the parliamentary elections of 2007, the Center Party retained its lead at 51 seats, but the election was a major victory for the National Coalition, which got 50 seats, and a major loss to SDP, which got 45 seats, losing 8 seats. A new coalition cabinet, Vanhanen II, between Center, Coalition, Greens, and the Swedish People's Party was formed.
Åland is a province that accounts for 0.5% of Finland's population, a total population of 27,210. The Åland's autonomous political status under the Act on Åland Autonomy gives the Parliament of Åland legislative powers over a number of areas. Aside from these issues, the state of Finland, represented by the Provincial Governor, is sovereign and residents vote in general parliamentary elections for one representative to the Finnish parliament.
Elections in Åland are held every four years at the same time as municipal elections are held in the Municipalities of Åland. A proportional representation system encourages a multitude of political parties and has resulted in many coalition cabinets. Åland has different political parties than continental Finland.
The Premier of the Government of Åland, Lantråd, is appointed by the speaker of the Parliament, based on the vote in the parliamentary elections. Usually the chairman of the biggest party becomes the next prime minister. In the parliamentary elections on 21 October 2007 there were two dominating parties: the Liberals for Åland got 10 seats, and the Åland Centre got 8 seats, in the 30-seat Lagting. These parties then formed a new cabinet led by Viveka Eriksson.
Municipalities of Finland, that include cities and other (rural) municipalities, are the basic local administrative units of the country. Most of basic services are provided by the municipality, and are bound to do so by law. Municipalities have council-manager government, where the council (valtuusto) is the highest authority. Every four years, a council is elected.
Councils name a civil servant, the city manager or municipal manager, to conduct day-to-day administration of the municipality. In addition, councils name committees (lautakunta) and a municipal executive board (kunnanhallitus). Councils meet periodically and decide on major issues. The executive board prepares the bills and is responsible for the administration, finances and supervision of the interests of the municipality. Unlike in central government, executive boards usually consist of all parties represented in the council; there is no opposition.
Although municipal elections are local only, and local results vary, they do function as a measure of the sentiments and party strengths also nationally. In the 2017 election, National Coalition was the most-voted party, with Social Democrats second and Center the third. Proportionally, the biggest winner was the Green League, whose share of votes rose to 12.5% from 8.5% in 2012 municipal elections. The biggest losers were the Finns Party, whose share of votes dropped to 8.8% from 12.3% in 2012.
Finland has participated in European parliament elections since joining the European Union in 1995. The first Finnish election was held in 1996.
Finland's first county elections will be held in 2022.
The Constitution of Finland allows only for a non-binding (consultative) referendum called on by the Parliament (Article 53 of the Constitution).
As of 2013 there have been only two referendums in Finland:
In both cases measures passed, and Parliament acted according to the results of the vote (although the referendum in Finland is non-binding).
Municipal law 30-31 § gives right to Referendum since year 1990. It had been used 56 times between 1990 and 2010. Citizens of Turku collected 15,000 names in one month for referendum against the underground car park. Politicians with in the elections unknown financing from the parking company neglected the citizens opinion. [ citation needed ]According to International Association of Public Transport UITP parking places are the among the most effective ways to promote private car use in the city. Therefore, many European cities have cancelled the expensive underground car parking after the 1990s. The EU recommended actions cover develop guidance for concrete measures for the internalisation of external costs for car traffic also in urban areas. Parking control, can only be successful if they are enforceable. In Finland the shops routinely offer free parking for customers which rises the prices of food for all customers, also for those who bicycle or walk.
There were also around 40 municipal referendums in Finland (as of 2006).Most have been about municipal mergers.
If 50 thousand Finnish citizens sign an initiative (for an act or a referendum), the Parliament has to discuss it, but the initiative is not binding, so the parliament does not have to initiate a referendum.This provision entered into force on 1 March 2013, and the first such initiative to reach Parliament was an initiative to ban fur farming, which was rejected by the Parliament. Several other initiatives reached the Parliament in 2013, including "Common Sense in Copyright" initiative, and a gay marriage initiative.
The politics of Finland take place within the framework of a parliamentary representative democracy. Finland is a republic whose head of state is President Sauli Niinistö, who leads the nation's foreign policy and is the supreme commander of the Finnish Defence Forces. Finland's head of government is Prime Minister Sanna Marin, who leads the nation's executive branch, called the Finnish Government. Legislative power is vested in the Parliament of Finland, and the Government has limited rights to amend or extend legislation. Because the Constitution of Finland vests power to both the President and Government, the President has veto power over parliamentary decisions, although this power can be overruled by a majority vote in the Parliament.
The politics of Latvia takes place in a framework of a parliamentary representative democratic republic, whereby the Prime Minister is the head of government, and of a multi-party system. The President holds a primarily ceremonial role as Head of State. Executive power is exercised by the government. Legislative power is vested in both the government and parliament, the Saeima. The Judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature. The Economist Intelligence Unit rated Latvia a "flawed democracy" in 2019.
Elections in Sweden are held once every four years. At the highest level, all 349 members of Riksdag, the national parliament of Sweden, are elected in general elections. Elections to the 20 county councils and 290 municipal assemblies – all using almost the same electoral system – are held concurrently with the legislative elections on the second Sunday in September.
The Green League, shortened to the Greens, is a green political party in Finland.
The Parliament of Finland is the unicameral and supreme legislature of Finland, founded on 9 May 1906. In accordance with the Constitution of Finland, sovereignty belongs to the people, and that power is vested in the Parliament. The Parliament consists of 200 members, 199 of whom are elected every four years from 13 multi-member districts electing 7 to 36 members using the proportional D'Hondt method. In addition, there is one member from Åland.
The D'Hondt method, also called the Jefferson method or the greatest divisors method, is a method for allocating seats in parliaments among federal states, or in party-list proportional representation systems. It belongs to the class of highest-averages methods.
Norway elects its legislature on a national level. The parliament, the Storting, has 169 members elected for a four-year term by a form of proportional representation in multi-seat constituencies.
Elections in the Netherlands are held for five territorial levels of government: the European Union, the state, the twelve Provinces, the 21 water boards and the 355 municipalities. Apart from elections, referenda were also held occasionally, but have been removed from the law in 2018. The most recent national election results and an overview of the resulting seat assignments and coalitions since World War II are shown at the bottom of this page.
Regular elections in Croatia are mandated by the Constitution and legislation enacted by Parliament. The presidency, Parliament, county prefects and assemblies, city and town mayors, and city and municipal councils are all elective offices. Since 1990, seven presidential elections have been held. During the same period, ten parliamentary elections were also held. In addition, there were nine nationwide local elections. Croatia has also held three elections to elect members of the European Parliament following its accession to the EU on 1 July 2013.
There are three types of elections in Denmark: elections to the national parliament, local elections, and elections to the European Parliament. Referendums may also be called to consult the Danish citizenry directly on an issue of national concern.
This article provides information on elections and election results in Austria.
Elections in Belgium are organised for legislative bodies only, and not for executive functions. Direct elections take place for the European Parliament, the bicameral Federal Parliament, the Parliaments of the Communities and Regions, the provincial councils, the municipal councils and a few district councils. Voting is mandatory and all elections use proportional representation which in general requires coalition governments.
All elections in the Czech Republic are based on the principle of universal suffrage. Any adult citizen who is at least 18 years old can vote, except those who have been stripped of their legal capacities by a court, usually on the basis of mental illness. Elected representatives are elected directly by the citizens without any intermediaries. Election laws are not part of the constitution, but – unlike regular laws – they cannot be changed without the consensus of both houses of the Parliament. The Czech Republic uses a two-round plurality voting system for the Presidential and Senate elections and an open party-list proportional representation system for all other elections. The proportional representation system uses the D'Hondt method for allocating seats.
Elections in Luxembourg are held to determine the political composition of the representative institutions of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Luxembourg is a liberal representative democracy, with universal suffrage guaranteed under the constitution. Elections are held regularly, and are considered to be fair and free.
Elections in Lithuania are held to select members of the parliament, the president, members of the municipal councils and mayors, as well as delegates to the European Parliament. Lithuanian citizens can also vote in mandatory or consultative referendums.
Malta elects on a national level 6 MEPs representing Malta in the European Parliament, on a district level the legislature, On a local level the Local Councils and on a community level the Administrative Committees.
Elections in San Marino gives information on election and election results in San Marino.
Parliamentary elections were held in Finland on 16 March 2003. The Centre Party led by Anneli Jäätteenmäki overtook the Social Democratic Party (SDP) to become the largest party in the Eduskunta. This was credited mainly to Jäätteenmäki's powerful leadership and modernization of the party still often viewed as agrarian and conservative by many. However, the SDP actually won some seats and increased its share of the vote, losing in the number of total popular votes only by a few thousand.
Åland is represented by a single seat in the Parliament of Finland. Whilst the rest of Parliament is elected by proportional representation in multi-member constituencies, the islands have a single-member constituency., in effect making elections for Åland's representative to Parliament a first-past-the-post (FPTP) election. In the event the Åland seat becomes vacant, a replacement is chosen as in other electoral districts, with one key difference: if a replacement is not available, a new election for the seat must be held as soon as possible. During other elections, such as presidential elections or elections for the European Parliament, the entire country of Finland, including Åland, forms a single electoral district.
Legislative elections were held in Åland on 18 October 2015, alongside elections for sixteen municipal councils: Mariehamn town, nine rural socken on the main island, Fasta Åland, and six skerries socken.