The Blue Group of politicians who split from the Finns Party at the beginning of summer, has collected the 5,000 signatures of voters it needs to register as an official political party.
MP Sampo Terho says the Blues will lodge their application with the Ministry of Justice on Monday.
Nineteen Finns Party MPs, including five ministers and the Speaker of Parliament, decided to form the Blue Group, and stay part of the Coalition Government, following the election of Jussi Hala-aho as Finns Party Chairman. You can read more about the bitter divorce in our original story here.
Terho says the party is unlikely to put forward their own candidate for January’s presidential elections, but that a final decision will be made in the next few weeks.
Alternatively, without a candidate of their own, the Blues could endorse another party’s candidate.
The Blues would need to form an organising committee and collect 20,000 supporters to back their own candidate in the presidential election. Given the length of time it took them to collect 5,000 signatures to form a political party, it seems unlikely they could get 20,000 signatures in the time remaining.
At the local level, a small number of councilors from the Finns Party have switched allegiance to the Blues.
Terho says he knows that people are interested in the new party, but people have to make their own decisions whether to become members or not.
The prospective party has enjoyed only modest support in opinion polls. A poll by state funded broadcaster YLE showed that the Blues would only get 1.5% support if elections were held.