Media leader: Kallas no longer in the running for presidency ({{commentsTotal}})

The publisher of Postimees daily, Mart Luik, says that Siim Kallas kissed his chances of becoming the next president goodbye when he criticized the inner workings of the Reform Party.

"The younger people who have hijacked the Reform Party have become a sort of boy band who will defend each other to the end, casting the old guys overboard when needed, but the role model of Res Publica is cautionary as support in society can disappear very rapidly," Luik said on Kuku Radio on Friday, appearing to concur with Kallas's criticism of the Reform Party.

"By younger people, I mean Kalev Lillo, Kristen Michal, Rain Rosimannus and Arto Aas and Remo Holsmer," he added.

Although there is a dearth of clear candidates to replace President Toomas Hendrik Ilves when his second - and last - term ends in 2016, Kallas has been viewed as the most logical. The one-time founder of the Reform Party is over 60, has held several executive posts in Estonia and the EU, and has been away from day-to-day politics for years.

"Siim Kallas didn't become party leader in spring as he didn't feel comfortable in the role of the head of the party he founded," Luik said.

Kuku Radio editor-in-chief Hindrek Riikoja said Kallas had a chance to change the Reform Party anew in the spring, but he "lost his nerve."

Riikoja mooted the name of Marina Kaljurand, the influential ambassador to the US (and before that to Russia), who is seen as tough and competent, as well as a non-partisan. Riikoja attributed the first mention of Kaljurand's name to Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas.

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