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FSD2122 Finnish 2006 Presidential Election Survey: Candidate Choice and Profiles

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Authors

  • TNS Gallup Finland
  • Helsingin Sanomat

Keywords

elections, leadership, personality, personality traits, political leaders, presidential candidates, presidential elections, tolerance, voting, voting behaviour

Abstract

The data, which were collected just before the 2006 presidential elections, charted how much goals and personal qualities influence candidate selection and what kind of images respondents had of the candidates. The respondents were asked to evaluate, for example, which candidates promoted the consolidation of the welfare state, defended human rights and social equality, were against joining Nato, had too positive a view on globalisation or the European Union military alliance, had too cautious or audacious a stance on foreign policy or were forging closer ties with the United States and Russia. The respondents rated the candidates' leadership qualities, such as expertise in foreign policy, humanity, ability as a public performer, broadmindedness, reliability, justness, ability to function under pressure, far-sightedness, and strength. The respondents were also asked how important it was in choosing a candidate that the president defends human rights and social equality in Finland and on a global scale, approves or disapproves of Nato membership, takes a critical or an open attitude to globalisation, wants to reduce presidential powers, supports the enlargement of the EU, aims to increase the resources of Finnish national defence, and meets ordinary Finnish citizens often. The respondents assessed how much candidates' characteristics affected their voting decision. The characteristics included gender, expertise, humanity, party allegiance, elegance, patriotism, determination, tolerance, reliability, irreproachability, justness, and Christian beliefs.

Background variables included the respondent's year of birth, gender, basic and vocational education, occupational group, occupational group of household head, industry of employment, trade union membership, voting behaviour, left-right political self-placement, municipality type, and province and county of residence.

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