“There has to be a limit to climate hysteria,” he continued. “Vote to get Finland back.”
Other Finns Party candidates have offered over-the-top variations on this message: “If every Finn shot himself, it would do nothing to stop climate change” (Juho Eerola, the party’s deputy chair); and “If Finns stopped driving cars, it would delay global Armageddon by one minute” (Kristian Laasko, a candidate in the southeast district of Kaakkois-Suomi).
With this line of argument, the Finns Party has been able to attract working-class males — eight in 10 of its voters are men — from the Social Democratic Party, the country’s traditional left-wing party. David Arter, a political scientist who has followed the party closely, said the Finns Party has “sought to exploit its ostracized status for electoral gain,” and the mainstream emphasis on climate change, an issue that does not resonate with male traditionalists, has played into its hands.
This argument only resonates with a small part of the electorate, Mr. Yla-Anttila said, but could still have a significant effect. With nine parties currently represented in Parliament, the most popular party will get only around 20 percent of the vote, and a swing of 1 to 2 percentage points could propel the Finns Party into second place.