Finland became the country with the world’s youngest current head of government on Tuesday.
Sanna Marin rose quickly to the top level of Finnish politics. At age 27, she took over as city council leader in her hometown of Tampere in southern Finland. She became a national lawmaker in 2015.
Lawmakers in the 200-seat eduskunta (meaning “Assembly of Representatives”) voted 99-70 to make 34-year-old Marin leader of the government. She is the third woman picked as Finland’s prime minister.
Finland has a parliamentary system of government. Finnish leaders must have the support of the governing body. When a leader loses the confidence or support of lawmakers, he or she is replaced.
The previous prime minister, Antti Rinne, 57, stepped down a week ago after Finland’s Center Party withdrew its support from him.
Marin is different from most older Finnish politicians because she uses social media often. She discussed her personal social media policies with reporters and vowed not to change her ways.
“As I’ve said, I represent the younger generation,” Marin told the Associated Press in English. “I think that I’m an individual and a real person also even though I’m the prime minister. So I won’t change the way I behave. But of course, I will be careful of what I say” in social media postings.
Marin became the youngest leader of a government in the world, beating out Ukraine’s 35-year-old prime minister, Oleksiy Honcharuk.
But she might not hold the title for long. Sebastian Kurz, 33, may soon become Austria’s chancellor.
A reporter asked Finland’s 32-two-year-old education minister, Li Andersson, about young females at the helm of Finnish politics. Her answer: “Much more important than what is our age and what gender we represent is naturally what kind of politics we’re doing together.”
Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. — 1 Timothy 4:12
(Finland’s President Sauli Niinisto, left, and Prime Minister Sanna Marin shake hands to welcome the new government of Finland. Jussi Nukari/Lehtikuva via AP)