Ansip: Non-Party Votes Were a Lost Cause (1)
In Tallinn's elections yesterday, the number of votes collected by citizens' election coalitions, independent candidates and parties that did not make the electoral threshold was 16,717.
This year, the cutoff in Tallinn was 10,927 votes (5 percent of the total votes cast). The most significant group falling below that point was Free Tallinn Citizen, which collected 8,785 votes (4.01 percent). The Conservative People's Party was still further with 5,950 votes (2.72 percent), and the other groups and independent candidates received considerably less support.
In comments to ETV last night, Prime Minister Andrus Ansip, who heads the Reform Party, lamented the fact that the still notable number of votes collected by citizens' election coalitions in the end were discounted from the elections because they did not meet the electoral threshold.
"I regret the votes that were a lost cause in these elections. I am referring to the citizens' election coalitions, whose votes essentially translated into votes for Center Party supporters," he told ETV.
Yet while a redistribution of these votes may have given the opposition parties more mandates (the mandate result was Center: 46, IRL: 16, Reform: 9, Social Dems: 8), it still may not have been enough to shake the Center's majority in the city council.
In that respect, critics said, Ansip's comments seemed to downplay the Center's overall popularity: 115,074 votes (52,65%). That compares with 41,899 votes (19.1 percent) for IRL, 23,182 votes (10.6 percent) for the Reform Party and 21,686 (9.9 percent) votes for the Social Democrats.