Local elections were held in Finland yesterday. The greatest winning party was the True Finns , achieving a gain of 4,6 percentage points from 0,9% to 5,4% since the previous local elections in 2004. The media have mostly attributed this to the charismatic leader of the party, Timo Soini. In reality, the victory owed to a greatly expanded local organisation. In Helsinki, Jussi Halla-aho, a sharp critic of multiculturalism and mass immigration envisioned by certain political leaders and top civil servants in Finland, gained 2916 votes, which made him the 18th most popular candidate in nationally and the 13th most popular in Helsinki. The National Coalition Party, the leading conservative party, became the largest party for the first time in history. Among the winners was also the Green League. The biggest losers were the Social democrats , the Left Alliance, and the Swedish People's Party.
An friend of mine is a teacher in Helsinki. A few years ago, very shortly after he graduated, he spoke very positively about immigrants. When I met this friend of mine yesterday, he lamented that his immigrant pupils were "making him a racist". He did not explain what precisely it was that was causing this. But I think this is what pretty much sums up what caused the landslide victory of the True Finns in the municipal elections.