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Votes cast for the parties and voting turnout in Municipal elections 2000

Election victory for the Centre Party, the Social Democratic Party and the National Coalition Party lost their support

The Centre Party of Finland emerged as the winner of the Municipal elections and became the largest party in Finland. The Centre Party received 23.8 per cent of all votes cast, increased its proportion of votes cast by two percentage points and attained a better result than at any previous Municipal elections. In all, the Centre Party with its 528,319 votes beat the second best party, the Social Democratic Party by about 17,000 votes. The Centre Party increased its support in all constituencies, most in the constituency of Lapland, by 4.2 percentage points. The Centre Party gained a total of 4,625 seats in the whole country, which is 166 more than in the previous elections. 30.9 per cent of the elected Centre Party councillors were women.

The Social Democratic Party got the second highest number of votes, thus losing its place as the largest party. It gained 23.0 per cent of all votes cast, losing 1.5 percentage points of its support in the previous Municipal elections. The total number of votes cast for the SDP was 511,370, i.e. over 72,200 votes fewer than in 1996. Measured by the number of votes, all parties, except the winner, gained fewer votes than in the previous Municipal elections due to the poor participation rate. Of the constituencies, the party lost the most of its support in percentage points in the constituencies of Helsinki (-2.7), Kymi (-2.6), Häme (-2.2), Lapland (-2.2) and South Savo (-2.0). In all, the SDP gained 2,559 seats, losing 184. Of the elected SDP councillors, 38.1 per cent were women.

The National Coalition Party gained 20.8 per cent of all votes cast. The support of the Coalition Party fell by 0.8 percentage points. The total number of votes cast for the party was 463,493, over 50,800 fewer than in the previous elections. The Coalition Party improved its support in its strong areas in the constituency of Helsinki by 1.8 and in the constituency of Uusimaa by 0.6 percentage points. In all other constituencies its number of votes cast dropped. The Coalition Party gained a total of 2,028 seats in the whole country and lost 139 seats. Women accounted for 35.4 per cent of the elected councillors of the Coalition Party.

The Left Alliance gained 9.9 per cent of all votes cast. Its support declined by 0.5 percentage points (by almost 27,000 votes) from the previous Municipal elections. It got 1,027 seats and lost 101 seats in the whole country. 32.3 per cent of the elected Left Alliance councillors were women.

Of smaller parties, the Green League and the Christian League were also election winners. The support of the Greens rose by 1.4 percentage points to 7.7 per cent and the their number of seats by 46, i.e. they got 338 seats in the whole of Finland. The support of the Christian League went up by 1.1 percentage points to 4.4 per cent and they received 443 seats, 90 more than before. Of the elected Green councillors, 58.9 per cent were women and of the Christian League councillors 38.6 per cent.

Of all 12,278 elected councillors, 4,220, or 34.4 per cent were women.

Proportion of votes cast for different parties in the Municipal elections in 2000 and 1996 (%)


Municipal council seats of the major parties in the Municipal elections in 1968 - 2000







































2 351


3 533


1 388


1 770



2 533


3 297


1 503


1 691



2 735


3 936


2 047


2 050



2 820


3 889


2 373


1 835



2 830


4 052


2 423


1 482



2 866


4 227


2 392


1 336



3 130


3 998


2 009


1 319



2 733


4 453


2 172


1 130



2 559


4 625


2 028


1 027


Voting turnout record low, just 55.9%

The participation rate was exceptionally low in the Municipal elections for the second time in a row. Voting turnout now fell by five percentage points compared to the previous Municipal elections. In the previous elections the decline was even more dramatic, almost ten percentage points. A low participation rate was to be expected from the reduced number of candidates (-3,500) and weak participation in advance voting. Although the number of advance voters was now almost the same as four years ago, about 845,000, the number is clearly below the level attained in the previous elections, over million advance voters. Voting was weaker in urban municipalities (52.3%) than in semi-urban municipalities (59.0%) and rural municipalities (63.6%). Of the constituencies, voting was the most active in the constituency of Vaasa, at 64.4 per cent and the least active in Helsinki, at 50.9 per cent.

The total number of persons entitled to vote was 4,014,611. Right to vote was similar in these elections as in the previous Municipal elections. Eligible to vote were Finnish citizens and citizens of the Member States of the European Union as well as of Norway and Iceland, provided that they were 18 on the election day at the latest and had been recorded as residents of that municipality, as stipulated in the Act on the Municipality of Residence, in the Population Information System on 1 September 2000. Other foreign citizens fulfilling the above criteria were also eligible to vote, provided that they had been living continuously in Finland for at least two years (from 1 September 1998 to 1 September 2000). In all, there were about 58,200 foreigners entitled to vote, of whom 14,000 were citizens of other EU Member States.

Voting turnout in the Municipal elections 1950 - 2000

Last updated 31 May 2004

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Municipal elections [e-publication].
ISSN=2323-1114. 2000, Votes cast for the parties and voting turnout in Municipal elections 2000 . Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 5.7.2022].
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