Support for the coalition Reform Party fell slightly over the past week, though it is still the most popular political party in Estonia, according to a recent survey, followed by the opposition Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE).
The two coalition partners, Reform and Center, were supported by 47.7 percent of respondents to the survey, conducted by pollsters Norstat on behalf of conservative think-tank the Institute for Social Research (MTÜ Ühiskonnauuringute Instituut, while the three opposition parties combined – EKRE, the Social Democrats (SDE) and Isamaa – picked up 36.5 percent support.
Reform dipped below the 30-percent mark to 29.9 percent, Norstat says, while EKRE polled at 22 percent, and Center at 17.8 percent.
The top three are followed by Eesti 200 (12.6 percent), SDE (8.4 percent) and Isamaa (6.1 percent).
No significant changes have happened with party support for the second consecutive week, Norstat says. Reform's support has hovered around 30 percent for over a month, while EKRE, while it remains firmly in second place, has seen a 2.5 percentage point fall on its record level, posted at the beginning of August.
Researcher Martin Mölder pointed out that whereas a month ago, the gap between EKRE and the Center Party was at a record high, it's now fallen.
He said: "On the one hand, EKRE's support has decreased during the month and despite this, the difference between [EKRE and Center] remains substantial, and EKRE has a comfortable lead of over 4 percent."
Within the older voters' demographic, traditionally a Center stronghold but whose support for the coalition party had been ebbing through the year to August, a turnaround has been seen.
Now Center is gaining again with this section of society, and EKRE, previously growing in support, has started to fall again, Mölder said.
The latest Norstat poll aggregates over the period August 3-31 and took into account the views of 4,001 Estonian citizens of voting age, both over the phone and online, Norstat says.
The next elections are on October 17, to the local municipalities.
Editor: Andrew Whyte