"Samost ja Sildam": Who gained from the government conflict?

Toomas Sildam (left) and Anvar Samost.
Toomas Sildam (left) and Anvar Samost. Source: ERR

Hosts of Vikerraadio's "Samost and Sildam" talk show Anvar Samost and Toomas Sildam discussed who benefited from last week's government conflict.

Samost said that there were no winners. "It is likely that the reputations of all coalition partners were damaged, with the possible exception of Isamaa. The reputations of the Conservative People's Party (EKRE) and Center suffered," he said.

"Who won? I think that it is a needless question. My guess is that we will not see any great changes in party ratings in the coming weeks. Because everyone has taken a hit, the status quo will likely continue," the host said.

Toomas Sildam said that reversely and in light of the marriage referendum, all parties can also be seen as winners.

"Of course, we could say that EKRE won because the referendum will happen. And we could also say that Center and Isamaa won in that it will not be held on the same day as local government council elections on October 17 next year," Sildam explained.

"On the one hand, had the referendum coincided with local elections, it would have overshadowed the latter and local topics politicians would prefer to concentrate on. On the other, holding the referendum in spring makes it a separate event and gives it extra attention. There will be independent campaigns by NGOs. It is clear that political parties will also contribute and be forced to pick sides that many will find inconvenient. Especially the Center Party that has a lot of Russian voters who tend to be more conservative than liberal," he added.

Sildam said that the campaign will not be as restrained as promised in a recent declaration by sides to the coalition.

"I do not think it will be a calm and elegant debate on the significance of marriage and whether things have changed as we are living in the 21st as opposed to the 18th century, also as pointed out by the Pope, which the other side will counter by talking about the importance of tradition, the historically conservative nature of marriage and the need to maintain it. Instead, I believe it will be an extremely turbulent and sharp-edged period," he said.


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Editor: Marcus Turovski

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