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Friday, 12 August, 2022
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Sun, 12 Jun, 2016 12:09:00 AM
Petteri Orpo elected Kokoomus chair
FTimes – STT Report, Jun 12

Petteri Orpo has been elected the chairman of the Kansallinen Kokoomus (National Coalition Party) on Saturday.

The party delegates at a council in Lappeenranta elected their leader where Interior Minister Petteri Orpo beat the incumbent chairman and Finance Minister Alexander Stubb by 441 to 361 votes to in the second round of voting.

Earlier, in the first round of voting, Orpo bagged 396 votes while Stubb and another presidential candidate Elina Lepomäki bagged 294 and 122 votes respectively.

Stubb had been elected two years ago in a wave of enthusiasm at the party congress in Lahti. But there has been growing criticism against Stubb, mainly for lack of interest in domestic issues and also insufficient factual knowledge that led to embarrassing situations.

Timo Soikkanen, a former professor of political history at Turku University, said Orpo “knows Finland better than Stubb,” and he is also more interested in social policy than Stubb.

Meanwhile, the newly elected Kokoomus chairman, Petteri Orpo on Saturday said he would take over as the finance minister.

Speaking at a press conference Orpo said he has not yet given his position on other ministerial choices, or whether he would change other ministers in addition to the finance minister and the minister of the interior.

He wants to, among other things, wait until the party leadership has been completely chosen.

According to Orpo, both Alexander Stubb and Elina Lepomäki have places in Kokoomus.

He said if Jan Vapaavuori at some point returns to domestic politics, it would be a clear confirmation to the Kokoomus party.

Orpo will meet with Prime Minister Juha Sipilä on Monday and discuss how the government programme and policies can be achieved.

He emphasised that the three parties in the coalition government are equal partners.

Orpo said he did not personally believe in giant reforms, but instead would prefer to make a series of small reforms.

Stubb congratulated Orpo on his win. Stubb said there is only one winner, and that it is the Kokoomus party.

He also gave three pieces of advice to Orpo on his journey as the party chairman. He urged Orpo to use exact percentage values, to wear shorts with caution, and to always be a dartboard if a child asks.

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