Nearly half of the current government's 14 ministers have decided to run in this fall's local government council elections. Prime Minister Jüri Ratas, chairman of the Center Party, has confirmed that he will not.
On the political party level, it is clear that the Center Party has made a decision regarding ministers running in local government council elections. Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure Kadri Simson will take part in the elections in Pärnu while Minister of Rural Affairs Tarmo Tamm will be running in Põlva Municipality, where he is interested in the position of council chairman.
Minister of Health and Labour Jevgeni Ossinovski, chairman of the Social Democratic Party (SDE), told ERR that ministers' running in local elections had not been discussed at the party level. Minister of the Interior Andres Anvelt, however, a member of the SDE, confirmed that he will be running in the elections as well.
Minister of the Environment Marko Pomerants, a member of the Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL), told ERR that he found running in these elections to be fine, as local government and parliamentary elections run in separate cycles. IRL member and Minister of Social Protection Kaia Iva stated that she had yet to reach a decision regarding her personal plans.
According to political scientist Tõnis Saarts, the recognition that comes along with a ministerial position may play a more important role in bigger cities. "How should one treat a candidacy if it is already known ahead of time that [the candidate] will not be participating in the work of the council?" In Saarts' opinion, this is the main issue.
Editor: Aili Vahtla