View Full Version : Politics and Sex - Exposé boosts Finland PM's Standing

June Pelo
07-04-07, 21:10
This came over the Associated Press recently from Helsinki:

There are countries where intimate details about a prime minister's love life, from Internet dating to steamy sauna encounters, would have a negative effect in opinion polls. But not in Finland.

A book by the ex-girlfriend of Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen, which contains revelations that would make most men blush, seems to have boosted the Center Party leader's popularity.

"The Prime Minister's Bride" by Susan Kuronen, a twice-divorced mother of three, was released last month as campaigning began and became a best seller. The narrative is dominated by text messages between Kuronen and the divorced prime minister. She even claims Vanhanen ended their nine-month relationship last October with a text message.

Finns were not amused. More than 45,000 people signed an Internet petition objecting to the book and voicing support for Vanhanen. "I would say his popularity has improved because of it," said Jan Sundberg, a Univerity of Helsinki political science professor.

07-04-07, 23:33
Helsingin Sanomat has nothing about this so probably the signatures came from Americans.
:rolleyes: here's what Finns have said about Vanhanen:

Vanhanen increasingly popular as next Prime Minister
Poll shows half want incumbent to stay as head of government

Vanhanen increasingly popular as next Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen
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Centre Party leader and Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen is an increasingly popular choice as the next PM. According to a fresh poll commissioned by Helsingin Sanomat and conducted by Suomen Gallup, about half of Finnish voters want Vanhanen to hold the post after Parliamentary elections in March.
As Vanhanen's popularity has increased, the numbers of Social Democratic Party leader Eero Heinäluoma and the National Coalition Party's Jyrki Katainen have remained about the same.
The figures show that Heinäluoma has actually lost one percentage point from a previous poll in January, going down to 11 per cent, while Katainen has gone down two points to seven per cent. The changes fall within the poll's margin of error.

One in six voters would choose someone other than a leader of one of the three largest parties, while one in six would not express an opinion. "Someone else" has gained popularity as an option, while the proportion of those who are undecided has declined.
The survey provides food for thought for Katainen especially, as only 26 per cent of supporters of his own party feel that he is the best candidate for Prime Minister. Nearly as many National Coalition Party supporters preferred Vanhanen.
Among supporters of the National Coalition Party, "someone else" got the support of 41 per cent. As was the case in a previous survey, many of the party's supporters gave a name without being asked to: Sauli Niinistö.
Katainen's own popularity among his party's supporters has declined by ten percentage points in the past month.

Centre Party supporters are almost unanimously behind Vanhanen, who comes out slightly ahead of Social Democratic candidate Heinäluoma even among SDP voters.
Supporters of the Left Alliance and the Greens also tend to prefer Vanhanen over Heinäluoma. Jyrki Katainen has very few supporters outside the National Coalition Party.
Among Green and Left Alliance voters, "someone else" has gained popularity since January.

More than one third of respondents said that the Centre Party should hold the post of Prime Minister - a seven percentage-point increase from January.
The Social Democrats and the National Coalition Party have barely held on to their previous position, with 18 per cent wanting a Social Democratic Prime Minister, and 15 per cent preferring the National Coalition Party. One in four did not have an opinion, or did not express one.

The poll involved interviews with 1,000 Finns conducted between February 12th through 22nd.
The margin of error was up to three percentage points in either direction.

Helsingin Sanomat

08-04-07, 15:01
Yes, Minister Vanhanen is popular in many respects - and there is no law that a prime minister must live in celibacy here in Finland.

The book in questioned is imho 100% rubbish. The book was presented
for the public in a press conference way before the parliamental election to gain as much publicity as possible and of course boost coming sales. The only problem was that the only thing the supposed writer had was the cover at that time. Nothing more. But they needed publicity. What is in the now published book should be private information known by two persons only.

Perhaps the prime minister has learned from this escapade that needs a written non disclosure agreement...

I'm proud of that the people in this country can see through publicity stunts of this kind.

08-04-07, 18:04
People in USA think that if something is on television, it's got to be true. I can recall one guy on tv who actually said that ppl who were against Bush and the war should be shot. Evidence that we have many ppl in this country who could staff nazi type concentration camps.

08-04-07, 18:21
Sad to say but I'm certain that every country harbor potential concentration camp guards. The will always climb out of their holes when the right conditions are there…


08-04-07, 18:24
Here the KKK in the south changed to the GOP when LBJ signed the civil rights act of 1964 and the KKK types have influenced the GOP strongly ever since those daysl

June Pelo
08-04-07, 21:01
Vanhanen's affair was discussed on some blogs, and here's what Wikipedia had to say. Why did Vanhanen's wife suddenly divorce him if there's no truth to the story?

08-04-07, 21:25

The Susan Kuronen affair started well after Vanhanen's divorce. During the divorce process there were no rumors about infidelity on either part.

Now Vanhanen has been seen partying with green member of parliament Merikukka Forsius. I think that the poor guy is in a mid life crisis, but that's okay as long as his judgment in the affairs of the country isn't impaired.


I must say that I have never been able to keep track of American politics. I mean, that Abraham Lincoln was a republican and a liberal in many ways and in his days the democrats were the hard core conservatives.

Then all of a sudden the democrat F. D. Roosevelt was the most liberal of them all. And JFK was as liberal as any, but his dad was a con wasn't he?

And I think that any liberal democrat would gladly sign pres. Eisenhower's farewell speech. The development has gone exactly as he feared.

Reportedly there are liberal republicans still today, but where are they hiding? And I've heard of conservative democrats, but I haven't heard any.

Luckily I don't have to vote in America. Instead I can vote in Finland where we have only a dozen or so parties to choose from.:D


09-04-07, 01:47
June, I wouldn't put much faith in bloggers and anyway, if the guy is good as PM, personal life stuff isn't that important because none of us are picture perfect. I would prefer a Bill Clinton with his sexual pecadillos than a George Bush with his decisions to go to war on false pretenses. Bush deserves impeachment much more than did Clinton.
Sune, I try to follow things in Finland via Helsingin Sanomat online but your several parties are something that won't work here because of the way the two major parties, Republicans and Democrats, have set things up. Plus the views of your several parties are mixed up within each major party. The genuine Republicans such as Eisenhower are found mainly in the northeast. In the senate, we have two female senators, Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, both of Maine. None of the others have much appeal to me and I am in the Democratic party. We have had dirty politics in this country from the beginning. The forerunners of the Republicans setup the Alien and Sedition Act which made it illegal, among other things, to complain about the government with sole exception of Vice Pres. Jefferson. The next election to come voters kicked out that crowd and the law expired. So while some will say this party or that is best all of the time, it's not a fact.

There! I guess I've cleared that up and let's not have politics at sfhs anymore, eh?:D

09-04-07, 10:59
Yes - agree. No politics. And thus I will close this thread.