Expert: Kaljurand’s decision makes life easier for the Reform Party

Tõnis Saarts (ETV)
7/21/2016 4:40 PM
Source: BNS
Category: News

With her decision to run for president only if the duty of electing the next president of Estonia passes on to the electoral college Marina Kaljurand relieved the Reform Party of a difficult choice, Tonis Saarts, political scientist at Tallinn University, said on Thursday.

Kaljurand’s decision to run for president only if the election goes beyond the three ballot rounds in the Riigikogu and the electoral college is convened, Marina Kaljurand relieved the Reform Party of a difficult decision, political analist Tõnis Saarts of Tallinn University said.

Saarts told BNS on Thursday that since both candidates had a solid support base within the party, deciding in favor of either and one running against the other would mean increased tensions in the party.

“If Kallas fails in the Riigikogu, it will be possible for [the party] to nominate Kaljurand in the electoral college, or even to come up with Kallas again in the final rounds if he gets more support among the electors,” Saarts added. “Kallas’ chances to get elected in the Riigikogu depend on the other parties. We should look primarily to the coalition parties for the outcome.”

The question was what each individual party stood to gain in the different scenarios, Saarts said. Lots of tactical options were still; IRL could gamble for the electoral college, as their candidate Allar Jõks had better chances there. The Social Democrats, on the other hand, had a potential compromise candidate in Eiki Nestor and were more likely to want to see the next president elected in parliament. Separate deals with the Center Party couldn’t be ruled out either.

Foreign Minister Marina Kaljurand (independent) said on Wednesday that she recommended to the other political parties to back fellow Reform Party presidential hopeful Siim Kallas in the voting rounds in the Riigikogu, but would ask them to vote for her if electing the next president moved on to the electoral college.

Editor: Dario Cavegn

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