"If a president says already before the elections who will rule and who will not, there is no point in elections," the embattled party head was quoted as saying on postimees.ee on December 28. "This is not democracy by any standard."
Ilves said in his year's-end interview on ETV that the Centre Party must condemn the attempt to secure funding from Russia and scour its ranks of those involved.
Savisaar also responded to Ilves's criticism of the use of funds for construction of a Russian Orthodox church in Estonia by bringing up the matter of another church.
"The pioneer and champion in using a church in a political campaign is undoubtedly Andrus Ansip with the renovation of St. John's Church in Tartu for German funds."
Centre Party faction chairperson Kadri Simson said on ETV that the president was buying support for his re-election from prime minister Ansip's camp.