Finland’s former Prime Minister Alexander Stubb has emerged victorious in the second round of presidential elections, securing a narrow win over his rival Pekka Haavisto. Projections by Yle suggest that Stubb received almost 90 percent of the votes, with Haavisto trailing closely behind at 47.9 percent.
Stubb, who belongs to the National Coalition Party and is a pro-European politician, narrowly defeated Haavisto in this election cycle. Despite being a member of the same party as current President Sauli Niinistö, Stubb’s victory marks a departure from Niinistö’s leadership style and positions him as a new voice for Finland.
The 55-year-old Stubb served as Prime Minister of Finland from June 2014 to May 2015 and later held the position of Minister of Finance. He finished first in the first round of voting with 27.2 percent, compared to 25.8 percent for Haavisto.
Despite finishing lower than Stubb and Haavisto in the first round, right-wing populist parliament speaker Jussi Halla-aho and ex-European Commissioner Olli Rehn were still able to express their excitement about their aspirations following the election results. Halla-aho received about 16 percent of the votes, while Rehn received roughly the same amount.