PM: Is it too much to ask for opposition to respect the will of the people?

Reform Party leader, PM Kaja Kallas said in the ruling party's general assembly speech that voters have given Estonia a liberal government which fact the opposition would finally do well to recognize.

The Reform Party held its general assembly in Viimsi on Sunday.

Kaja Kallas said in her speech to fellow Reform members that national security is this government's biggest challenge. "Security and tidy finances are the two sides of the same coin. Without security, there is no reason to worry about the state budget because someone else will be deciding that for us. While we cannot ensure growing defensive capacity or national security without running a tight fiscal ship," she said.

"We have decided together with Eesti 200 and the Social Democrats that some cuts and moderate tax hikes that will not raise the general tax burden are the most just and least painful way to return to tidy fiscal policy."

The PM said that the government's future-oriented plans do not stop there, giving as examples green reforms, curbing regional inequality, switching to teaching in Estonian and equal treatment of everyone in Estonia. "All of it forms a part of our internal and external security," Kallas remarked.

The Reform Party chair admitted that she is concerned looking at the situation of democracy and respect for the Constitution in Estonia. "I did not like the EKREIKE government (coalition of EKRE, Isamaa and Center – ed.) one bit, while I never questioned its legitimacy because they got the parliamentary majority that time and we didn't," Kallas recalled.

She said that the 2023 elections' main question was whether the government would be formed by liberal Reform or the radically nationalist EKRE. "The Estonian voters made their choice and plotted a course for the next four years. A liberal course toward international cooperation. Is it truly too optimistic to hope that a day will eventually come when the parties that lost the election will admit defeat and respect the will of the Estonian people?"

Kallas said that EKRE have realized that they have no way to form a government this election cycle, which is the reason for their scorched earth tactics in the Riigikogu. "I have just one message for EKRE and its thugs. We will not surrender, we will not give up, we will fight your evil and hatred with everything the Constitution gives us. Your crazed and destructive behavior will achieve nothing, including extraordinary elections or a better rating."

The PM also had a message for the smaller coalition forces. She urged Isamaa and the Center Party to remember what joining EKRE in a coalition did to their election results and to return to the democratic world. "A world where coalitions come and go, while Estonia's democratic order remains."

"If EKRE believe that they have nothing to lose from letting their blind rage run rampant, I believe that you, dear members of Isamaa and Center, have nothing to gain from this kind of insanity," the PM said, pointing to recent Riigikogu filibustering.

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Editor: Marcus Turovski

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