The Duel of Stubb and Haavisto: Mastering the Art of Strategic Voting

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Non-aligned presidential candidate Mika Aaltola and his wife Kirsi at their campaign rally in Helsinki on January 28, 2024. Photograph: TONY ÖHBERG/FINLAND TODAY

Typically, the elderly are overrepresented in early voting statistics. Many are, after all, first-generation descendants of war veterans, or perhaps fought in the war itself—they have sisu. They have instincts that they hope will be passed on to their great-great-grandchildren in their mother’s milk.

Indeed. If there were enough voters willing to follow their guts, listen to their souls, and have some cojones, instead of being influenced by campaign budgets of millions of euros, mass media and tactics like strategic voting, people would give a truer reflection of the President they want.

Now the voters who supported political geniuses, first-timers like Mika Aaltola (non-aligned) who came second last with almost 50,000 votes, have to watch another round between two politicians who are tied in so many political knots that they may never be able to untie themselves and meet a potential voter with a sincere opinion and a genuine smile and a hug as if they meant it. (Haavisto began his political career in the 1980s, Stubb in the 2000s. Haavisto is a former Foreign Minister; Stubb a former Prime Minister.)

Now, for the sake of democracy, many will once again stand up, bite their lips, and cast another vote, sincere or not, maybe even for the candidate they despised in the first place.

For the sake of democracy.

The presidential election will go to a second round because no candidate received more than half of the vote in the first round.

In Finland, early voting for the second round will run from January 31 to February 6, 2023. Abroad, early voting for the second round will take place between January 31 and February 3, but many early voting centers abroad will be open for a shorter period. Election day for the second round is Sunday, February 11, 2024.

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  1. Amy Smith says

    I voted for Pekka Haavisto because I didn’t want Jussi Halla-aho anywhere near the finish line. Tactical voting played a major role in the outcome.

  2. GraceJohnson says

    Do you think voters really have the power to cut through the political knots and make a meaningful change in the upcoming elections?

    1. SamuelDavis says

      It’s a tough battle, GraceJohnson, but if voters unite and stay true to their beliefs, they can definitely shake up the political landscape. Each vote counts, and together, we can make a significant impact in the upcoming elections.

  3. Jenna_Smith says

    It’s a shame that we have to constantly choose between politicians entangled in their own self-interests instead of genuine leaders. The older generation with their rich wisdom should be given more consideration in the voting process. Let’s hope for a future where people vote with their hearts and not out of influence. #TrueDemocracy

  4. Caroline Smith says

    As an older voter, I truly believe that it’s time for people to trust their instincts and not be swayed by flashy campaigns and strategic voting tactics. Let’s give a chance to genuine candidates like Mika Aaltola who may not have the political experience but bring fresh perspectives to the table.

  5. EmilyJohnson says

    Do you think the concept of strategic voting truly reflects the voice of the people in elections?

    1. DavidSmith says

      Strategic voting, while a practical approach in some situations, can often drown out the genuine voices of the people in elections. It’s a delicate balance between tactical decisions and authentic representation of one’s beliefs. Unfortunately, in today’s political landscape, the former seems to overshadow the latter more often than not.

  6. AliceSmith says

    Personally, I believe that voters should trust their instincts and not be swayed by the influence of campaign budgets and mass media. It’s important to vote based on one’s gut feeling and genuine convictions rather than strategic voting tactics. Hopefully, in the future, we will see a President chosen by the people’s true desires and not by political entanglements.

  7. Maggie Smith says

    As an avid follower of politics, I truly believe that voters need to listen to their instincts and have the courage to vote based on their genuine beliefs rather than being swayed by the tactics employed by politicians. It’s time for a change in how we approach our democracy.

  8. EvaJohnson237 says

    Do you think strategic voting is hindering the true reflection of the President voters want?

    1. MaxCollins89 says

      Strategic voting definitely plays a significant role in shaping election outcomes. It often forces voters to compromise on their true preferences and settle for perceived “lesser evils.” While it may seem like a tactical move, it ultimately distorts the genuine voice of the electorate. Idealistically speaking, if everyone voted with their hearts and convictions rather than strategic calculations, the President chosen would truly reflect the collective will of the people.

  9. EmilyJohnson says

    Do you think strategic voting hinders the representation of the true preferences of the people in elections?

  10. Mia Jones says

    As a passionate voter, I believe it’s high time we prioritize our instincts and souls over the influence of campaign budgets and strategic voting tactics. Let’s aim for a democracy where genuine opinions and sincere smiles matter more than political knots and career timelines.

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