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Dutch vote shows single issue parties won't succeed - Finnish minister
March 16, 2017 / 12:28 PM / 8 months ago

Dutch vote shows single issue parties won't succeed - Finnish minister

HELSINKI (Reuters) - Smaller-than-expected gains for Geert Wilder’s anti-Islam party in the Dutch election show that a political group must have a broad agenda to succeed, Finland’s eurosceptic foreign minister Timo Soini said on Monday.

“It shows how far a party with a narrow agenda can reach in an election... One should define a stance for fiscal policy, education policy, foreign policy and so forth. One must be a general party to succeed in election,” Soini told reporters.

Soini helped his moderate nationalist Finns party become the second-largest party in parliament and enter government in 2015 by distancing the party from Europe’s far-right groups.

But compromises in government have angered voters, and the party now ranks fifth in the polls with support of about 9 percent.

Soini is due to step down from the party leadership in June in a move that may bring down the three-party government, and steer the Finns party deeper into right-wing populism.

Reporting by Jussi Rosendahl; Editing by Dominic Evans

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