The Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) has issued a statement explaining its rationale in pushing for a referendum on marriage, saying that only the Estonian populace as a whole should hold sovereignty in both defining marriage and enshrining the definition in the constitution. EKRE directly named President Kersti Kaljulaid as an opponent of this process.
EKRE, which is in office with the Center Party and Isamaa, hopes to hold the referendum in fall 2021 to coincide with the local elections that year, saying that this has been done in other countries on the issue of marriage and same-sex relations, and was attractive for practical and cost purposes.
"Only the people can decide on marriage as the fundamental value of family," the statement reads.
"The systematic attacks on the traditional family model by left extremist political activists who are dismantling society, and President Kersti Kaljulaid, who is encouraging them, prove that this family model needs even stronger, consistent and principled protection," the statement went on.
The statement said that traditional western values, rather than LGBTQ+ rights, were the real stake in any referendum on the matter and the status of marriage, which EKRE says leads to higher birth rates and greater success among children born into such environments, in Estonia as a whole.
"The institution of marriage must be strengthened, not dismantled - this is one of the guarantors of our statehood," EKRE said.
EKRE: Referendum way to avoid authoritarian yet hedonistic Estonia
The statement went on to join the dots between globalization and immigration together with elitism, authoritarianism, hedonism, multi-culturalism, censorship and the rewriting of history, and the repression of peoples of European descent, all of which could be avoided if referendums could be made a norm in Estonia, it said.
"The definition of marriage must not be left to an aggressive minority and extremist activists. The people must decide which family model and what future our country favors and protects," the statement added.
Ultimately such questions could only be adequately addressed by the people as a whole, the statement continued, adding that the marriage meaning one man and one woman should in this way be put up for a vote and added as a definition in the Estonian constitution.
The statement said that the need for preparations for a fall 2021 referendum was now urgent and needed to be made at national government level and integrated into the municipal elections process.
A precedent had been set in many other countries where referenda had both addressed enshrining same-sex marriage in law and defined what marriage was, sometimes concurrent with local or other elections, which makes the process cheaper and easier, EKRE said.
EKRE reelects Urmas Reitelmann party chair
EKRE held an extended board meeting in Turi, in central Estonia, Saturday, where MP Urma Reitelmann was reelected as party chair. Mart Kallas, party chair in the Tallinn city council chamber, was elected deputy in a process canvassing the party's national and regional leadership and MPs.
Editor: Andrew Whyte