Ossinovski downplays ministerial ambitions
New Social Democrat Chairman Jevgeni Ossinovski said it would be more useful for the party if he continued as an MP instead of switching out one of the four SDE government ministers.
Ossinovski, who replaced Sven Mikser as the party's head on the weekend, told ETV today he has fresh ideas on how to reshuffle the decision-making progress in the party, to involve more party members.
He said an action plan on how to strengthen the party's regional departments, connect more with people and strengthen the party's internal democracy will be drawn up. He cited a digitized platform for involving more people as one idea. “Sadly most of the decision-making and debate has taken place in Tallinn, but a great many party members reside outside Tallinn.”
“Currently I am of the opinion that it would be beneficial for the Social Democrat party that its chairman would not be part of the government as in the Parliament I would have more time to work on the party,” he said.
He reaffirmed his wish to review the coalition agreement, signed between his party, IRL and the Reform Party less than two months ago. Although he added that it is too late to challenge the most heated topic of fuel tax and accommodation tax hikes, which have already been sent to Parliament.
Ossinovski said a compromise has already been achieved on tax hike questions.
“If it is possible to continue with the current partners, then we shall do so. In any case, the Social Democrats must remain in government. Certainly other opportunities, which can be considered, will present themselves in the next four years,” Ossinovski said, commenting on the current government set-up.
Ossinovski added that under no circumstance would his party be willing to cooperate with the Conservative Peoples' Party.
Ossinovski, who turned 29 this year, only decided to run for the party's top position in mid-May, with few predicting a challenge to Mikser. Mikser only said he will not run again at the party congress, adding support for Ossinovski, who was duly voted in with 443 votes against 39.