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Thursday’s papers: Finland's next PM, basketball news and slippery weather in store

One story dominates the Finnish press: Will Sanna Marin or Antti Lindtman take over as premier?

Sanna Marin, SDP, A-studion ohjelmassa 4. joulukuuta 2019.
Thursday's Helsingin Sanomat posits that Sanna Marin could become Finland's next prime minister. Image: yle

"Marin leads with ministerial experience," is the leader headline in main daily Helsingin Sanomat (HS), which goes on in its editorial to outline the reasons that Sanna Marin, 34, will likely become Finland’s next prime minister. This follows in the wake of former PM Antti Rinne’s dramatic resignation on Tuesday following the fallout from the postal workers' recent industrial action.

"Marin is the favourite as the next SDP prime ministerial candidate," writes HS, citing its own poll carried out on Tuesday evening. "Thirty percent of respondents supported Minister of Transport and Communications Marin, while MP and Social Democratic Parliamentary group chair Antti Lindtman received only 12 percent support."

HS writes that Marin is former PM Rinne’s choice of the two potential candidates. Marin also has previous party chair experience, as she took over for Rinne when he was on sick leave last winter.

HS goes onto say that while Lindtman is only 37, voters may feel that he’s long been in politics although in reality this is only his third term as an MP. A schism arose between Rinne and Lindtman during the 2017 SDP party political conference, when there were suggestions that Lindtman would challenge Rinne’s position as chair, but that didn’t happen.

Furthermore, writes HS, last spring Rinne offered Lindtman the Labour Minister portfolio, which Lindtman turned down. This is an issue that will no doubt arise in the contest for the prime ministerial role.

HS concludes in its editorial that the competition is down to the fine line between an experienced minister and an ungrateful political portfolio rejector.

He shoots, he scores

The Iltalehti tabloid's sports pages lead with a story about Finnish Chicago Bulls basketball player Lauri Markkanen, who scored 15 points and five rebounds on Wednesday night in an NBA tournament game against the Memphis Grizzlies, with a final winning score for the Bulls of 106-99.

“Now this feels good!” said Markkanen in an interview with American TV network NBC News.

This is the first time this season that the Chicago team is on a winning streak, having won two games in a row.

Slippery weather in store

Ilta-Sanomat (IS), the sister tabloid of HS, warns readers that sidewalks throughout the country are very slippery this morning as the Finnish Meteorological Institute has issued a warning about poor pedestrian conditions throughout Finland with the exception of Lapland.

Freezing temperatures overnight have turned water-covered icy patches into slick skating rinks.

Correction: This story was amended to reflect that Sanna Marin has party chair experience (not prime ministerial experience), as she took over for Rinne when he was on sick leave last winter.

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