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Presidential Candidate Laura Huhtasaari Dreams of Ruling the Country With Jussi Halla-aho

Presidential candidate Laura Huhtasaari would turn asylum seekers from “safe countries” away at the border. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Laura Huhtasaari, 38, has a dream: “When Jussi Halla-aho (Finns Party chair) is the Prime Minister and I am the President, things are going to change.”

One of the changes according to Huhtasaari, who is the presidential candidate of the Finns Party (and VP of the party) and was speaking in an election panel discussion at MTV3, is to give more power to the president.

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In Huhtasaari’s vision, the president would, for example, have the right to disband the parliament. Currently, the president could disband the parliament only by an initiative of the prime minister. In other words, if the parliament would produce unfavorable laws — or nothing — Huhtasaari could strike down her Mjolnir, and the people would have to vote and vote and vote. My guess is more often than every four years.

Huhtasaari’s vision is nothing new. The last Mohican with extensive presidential powers was Urho Kekkonen, who was the longest-serving president in Finland’s history between 1956 to 1982 — a total of 25 years. Kekkonen was famous for disbanding the parliament three times between the ‘60s and ‘70s.

Since the ‘80s, they started to water down the prerogative of the president. The late Mauno Koivisto was the trailblazer with his initiative to allocate the right to disband the parliament to the prime minister. Since then, the same president can only be elected for two consecutive terms and in 2012, Koivisto regretted it all in an interview by YLE.

The last feather from the prerogative hat of the president was pulled in 2000 when the parliament during the presidency of Tarja Halonen accepted a new constitution, which appointed the prime minister as the head of the government.

Even if Huhtasaari couldn’t finger the law of today — and in truth, according to a recent survey, 60 percent of Finns would like the president to have more power — Huhtasaari could still, perhaps, be daydreaming of Jussi Halla-aho to become the premier.

There are two ways this could happen. The Finns Party would have to win the parliamentary elections in 2019. In result, the chair of the vote-puller party becomes the government negotiator. Presuming, of course, that Halla-aho would still be at the helm. Then the parliament would have to find Halla-aho to be the best candidate to rule the government. According to anonymous sources, this, however, is unlikely to happen. “Halla-aho is as likable as crumbs of crispbread in bed,” said one of the naysayers.

The unbelievers have a point . . . Halla-aho is the most famous critic of Islam, immigration and humanity. One of his notorious pieces of writing goes like this: “Robbing of passers-by and living as a parasite is a national, maybe even a genetic characteristic of Somalis.”

Nevertheless, Huhtasaari idolizes Halla-aho. After finding Halla-aho’s ideology somewhat moving, they became soul mates during a campaign for elections to the European Parliament in 2014. (Vallantavoittelijat, Tammi, 2017.)

Huhtasaari and her soul buddy shared a common agenda: to separate Finland from the EU — and euro for that matter — and to bring back the independence to Finland.

Halla-aho became a member of the EU parliament, and Huhtasaari had to submit to the role of an EU critic. Nevertheless, Finland is continuing to grow its relations with the union, and while Finland is still recovering from the whole year of celebrating the centenary of its independence, there are about 100,000 people with a foreign background living in Helsinki only.

And the number keeps growing.

Presidential elections are held on January 28 2018, with a second round on February 11, if necessary. The elected president’s term will be from March 1, 2018, to March 1, 2024.

The candidate in a nutshell:

Name: Laura Huhtasaari

Age: 38

Hometown: Pori

Marital status: Married

Children: Two daughters, 11 and 4

Favorite politicians: Jussi Halla-aho, Donald Trump

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