Center Party has Russian votes wrapped up, says expert (1)

Photo: Postimees/Scanpix
2/25/2015 1:46 PM
Category: Politics

Only the Social Democrats have challenged the Center Party's hegemony among ethnic-Russian voters at the upcoming national elections, and even those gains have disappeared, University of Tartu political scientist Mihkel Solvak said.

According to latest polls, only 7 percent of this demographic plans to vote for the Social Democrats, compared to 81 percent for the Center Party. Solvak says the Social Dems have failed to reach this segment.

“It probably hints that the Social Democrats do not have the names who, on a national level, could mobilize the minority to vote for them,” Solvak told ERR.

He said the Center Party was able to secure loyalty from Russian voters and also mobilize them to actually vote, which became more apparent at the last local elections at the end of 2013.

The turnout of ethnic Russians at elections has been low, but spiked at the local elections, and passed the interest of ethnic Estonians.

Speaking about the two fringe parties likely to pass the threshold, Solvak said both the Free Party and the Conservative People's Party will steal votes from IRL, as they have both positioned themselves on the right.

J.M. Laats

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