The center changed its rules on presidential candidacy – Väyrynen practically cannot participate in the primary election anymore

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The decision of the center's party council raises the threshold for entering the primaries of the party's presidential candidates. According to the party secretary, the reason is not the individual candidates. This is how Olli Rehn commented on his possible presidential candidacy in June 2022. Uncensored Päivä

 The center changed the rule on Jääääääää&andash; Väyrynenäisäsääääääääääääääääääää&andash; iltalehti.fiYesterday at 7:55 p.m.

<p class=The central party council has decided to raise the requirements for presenting the party's presidential candidate.

On Sunday, the party's primary election rules were changed so that the party's future presidential candidate must be nominated by three district organizations or 20 party associations in order for the candidate to have the opportunity to stand in the primary election.

Previously, a proposal by one district organization or 10 associations was enough to nominate half of the presidential candidates. .

 The center changed its position on the presidential candidacy - Vyrynen will no longer participate in the primary election

Olli, CEO of the Bank of Finland Rehn has not publicly announced that he is available to be the center's presidential candidate. Tiina Somerpuro

The change in the rules practically makes Paavo Väyrynenaccess to compete for the center's presidential candidacy. Väyrynen leads the Swedish-speaking district in the center and could, if he wished, enter the primary election by decision of his own district. However, it is extremely unlikely that Väyrynen would get three district organizations or 20 party associations behind him.

Until now, the main candidate for the Center has been the CEO of the Bank of Finland and long-time leader of the presidential race Olli Rehn >.

In background discussions, Rehn has made it clear that if he wants to run as a centrist presidential candidate, it should happen without a primary election. That way he would have the unanimous support of the party behind him.

Paavo Väyrynen founded the Citizens' Party and it was registered in the party register in 2016, but Väyrynen later returned to the ranks of the center. Elle Laitila

The party secretary denies

Väyrynen has already announced in 2019 that he aims for the presidential elections in 2024. Väyrynen today strongly divides opinions in the party. Many criticized, for example, Väyrynen's candidacy from the center's lists in the parliamentary elections.

The last time Väyrynen did not participate in the center's primaries was in the 2018 presidential election. In the end, Väyrynen was nominated through the voters' association and received more votes than the centrist candidate Matti Vanhanen. Olli Rehn also did not make it to the primary election train, who later regretted the events.

On Sunday, Iltalehti did not reach Väyry to comment on his desire to enter the presidential race or the change in the rules of the party council.

Party secretary Riikka Pirkkalainen says that the center's party government decided on the basic proposal for the change in the rules at the same time as it decided on the candidate list for the European elections. from the schedule. The party council decided on the change according to the proposal on Sunday.

– When it comes to the presidential election, when a party can only have one candidate, but 20 in the European elections, we wanted that to be reflected in the list of candidates as well. You need a slightly broader base to be a candidate in the presidential elections, says Pirkkalainen.

According to Pirkkalainen, the threshold for nominating European election candidates is now lower than for presenting presidential candidates, because it is also possible for the party to nominate more European election candidates than presidential election candidates.

Iltalehti asked if the rule change is about the wishes of any individual candidates. Pirkkalainen says that “no way”.

– This was a pure process decision. The guidelines were discussed first by the party board, then here in the party council, the Organizational Committee and the whole party council made a decision. I don't remember that there was even talk of candidate names at any point.

– So there have been no names on display, and especially not that any potential candidate has taken a stand on the party's process. At least no such discussions have taken place with me, Pirkkalainen says.

Iltalehti also asked if there had been a problem in the party in the past that there were too many presidential candidates. Pirkkalainen says he doesn't have such information.

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