Definitions

Green_League

Green League

This article refers to the political party, for the university environmental performance table, see The People & Planet Green League

The Green League (in Finnish: Vihreä liitto, Vihr.; in Swedish: Gröna förbundet), is a green political party in Finland. The current chairperson is Tarja Cronberg.

History

The party was founded February 28 1987, and registered as a political party the next year. Political activity had begun already in the early 1980s, when environmental activists, feminists and other active groups began to campaign on Green issues in Finland. In 1995 it was the first European Green party to be part of a state-level Cabinet.

The party was founded as a popular movement, and thus retains the descriptor liitto, "league". Initially, there was much resistance within the movement against the founding of a political party, motivated by Maurice Duverger's notion that movements inevitably degenerate into oligarchies when they create a formal organization. The party still especially stresses openness and democratic decision-making.

The first two parliamentary representatives were elected even before the registration, in the elections of 1983. These were the first independent representatives in the Finnish parliament. In 1987 the number of seats rose to four, and in 1991 to ten. In the 1995 election the Green League received a total of nine seats (out of 200), joined the coalition-cabinet led by the Social Democrats, and Pekka Haavisto became the minister of Environment and Development Aid, thus becoming the first green minister in Europe. The Green League received 7.3% of the vote, and gained two additional seats in 1999, raising the total to 11. The Greens continued in the next coalition-cabinet, but resigned in protest on May 26, 2002, after the cabinet's decision to allow the construction of a new nuclear plant was accepted in the parliament. In 2003 the Green League received 8.0% of the vote, giving a total of 14 seats. They increased their seats to 15 in 2007 when they received 8.5%.

One of the fourteen Finnish representatives in the European Parliament is Green: Satu Hassi. Before the 2004 elections there were two: Heidi Hautala and Matti Wuori.

At the local level, Greens are an important factor in the largest cities of Finland. In the local election of 2000 the Greens had 7.7% of the vote. In Helsinki (the capital) the Greens became the 2nd largest party with 23.5% of the vote. In several other cities the Greens achieved the position of the 3rd largest party. Its weak spot is the rural countryside, particularly municipalities experiencing strong outward migration.

The Green League is one of four parties forming the Finnish Government since April 2007. Its ministers are Tarja Cronberg (Labour) and Tuija Brax (Justice).

The Federation of Green Youth and Students is the Green League's youth organisation.

Ideology

Vihreä liitto is no longer a protest party, nor an alternative movement. The party has found its political home at the centre-left with a political agenda based on green politics. Nevertheless, many Green candidates in the elections reject classification as "left" or "right". Economic opinions of the members range between left and right.

In the party program, the Green League has criticized both the market economy and socialism, because Greens think that neither system cares about the environment, developing countries or future generations but, instead, concentrates too much on economic growth. Major principles in the party program are environmental protection, participatory democracy and social justice.

In the chamber of the Parliament and assembly rooms of local councils the Greens are standing between the Centre Party and the Social Democrats.

Elections results

Parliament elections

Year MPs Votes Share of votes
1983 2 43 754 1,47%
1987 4 115 988 4,03%
1991 10 185 894 6,82%
1995 9 181 198 6,52%
1999 11 194 846 7,27%
2003 14 223 846 8,01%
2007 15 233 930 8,5%

Local council elections

Year Councillors Votes Share of votes
1984 101 76 441 2,8%
1988 94 61 581 2,34%
1992 343 184 787 6,9%
1996 292 149 334 6,3%
2000 338 171 707 7,7%
2004 313 175 933 7,4%

European parliament elections

Year MEPs Votes Share of votes
1996 1 170 670 7,6%
1999 2 166 786 13,4%
2004 1 172 786 10,4%

Presidential elections

Parliamentarian and former MEP Heidi Hautala was a candidate in the presidential elections in 2000 and 2006, taking approximately a 3,5% share of votes in the first round.

Politicians

List of party chairs

Current members of parliament

The following 14 Green politicians were elected to the Finnish Parliament in the March 2007 parliamentary election, in addition to Merikukka Forsius, who has since defected to the National Coalition Party.

See also

See also

References

External links

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