Isamaa leader Urmas Reinsalu is the most popular candidate for the role of Estonian prime minister, according to a poll commissioned by daily news outlet Eesti Päevaleht (EPL) and organized by market research specialists Turu-uuringute AS. Reform Party leader and current PM Kaja Kallas was the second most popular in the poll, followed by Mihhail Kõlvart (Center) in third and Martin Helme (EKRE) in fourth.
For the first time this the year, the results of Eesti Päevaleht's monthly poll on who people would like to see as Estonia's prime minister have stabilized, with fluctuations in support for all party leaders within the margin of error, the paper said.
In November, 29 percent of respondents said they would see Isamaa leader Urmas Reinsalu as prime minister, while in December that figure was 28 percent. At the same time, support for Kaja Kallas has risen by one percentage point over the last month and now stands at 18 percent. Meanwhile, Center Party chief Mihhail Kõlvart's support fell by one percentage point to 13 percent and Mart Helme (EKRE) lost two percentage points, putting him at 12 percent.
Four percent of those polled wanted to see Social Democratic Party (SDE) leader Lauri Läänemets as prime minister and three percent wanted Eesti 200's Margus Tsahkna. 22 percent said they had no opinion.
Eesti Päevaleht pointed out that although the overall difference in support for Reinsalu and Kallas is 10 percentage points, both retain similar high levels of backing from among their own parties' supporters.
Reinsalu is backed by 84 percent of Isamaa supporters, and 80 percent of Reform Party supporters are behind Kallas. Kõlvart and Helme each have the support of 70 percent of their respective parties' voters.
Reinsalu has very strong support among respondents living in rural areas, with 43 percent backing him for the PM role. However, only 20 of Estonia's urban residents would prefer to see the Isamaa leader as prime minister. Kaja Kallas has 18 percent among those living in both urban and rural areas. Kõlvart also has 18 percent support among respondents from urban areas, but only 3 percent in rural locales.
According to the poll, Reinsalu has the support of 35 percent of Estonian respondents, Kallas has 22 percent and Helme 12 percent. Among respondents of other nationalities, 42 percent back Kõlvart, 11 percent would prefer Helme, six percent Kallas and five percent Reinsalu.
Support for Kaja Kallas has increased among male survey respondents, from 14 to 18 percent. At the same time, support for both Reinsalu and Helme among men decreased by five percentage points, from 32 percent to 27 percent and from 21 percent to 16 percent respectively.
Editor: Michael Cole