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Free Party shot itself in the foot with Talvik, says MP

Jüri Adams.
Jüri Adams. Source: Rene Suurkaev / ERR

The Free Party made a big mistake in choosing Artur Talvik as leader, says one of its MPs, Jüri Adams.

Mr. Adams related the situation in the party to Tallinna TV's ''Straight to 10'' ("Otse Kümnesse") on Tuesday.

In ER if not the mortuary

''It's not quite dead, but is at least in intensive care. The watershed was when Artur Talvik became leader 18 months ago,'' he continued.

Mr. Talvik joined the Free Party in March 2017, being elected leader soon after. He resigned in May 2018.

Mr. Adams said the chair of any party needs to meet requirements, which Mr. Talvik did not, nor did Mr. Adams himself, given he too voted for Mr. Talvik at the time.

Revolving door and pistol

''We never considered what the real strengths and drives of this seemingly promising man were. Within a year it was clear he was unsuitable, but he quit without slamming the door,'' Mr. Adams said.

''Artur was the one live round in the revolver; the whole party pulled the trigger,'' admitted Mr. Adams, adding that initial expectations of success transformed into an underestimation of what real political work means.

''Minor miracles do occasionally happen in politics, but real results come from practical work. Getting hold of the crazy notion that this is not so means things will quickly go south,'' he went on.

Data illustrates point

Pollsters Turu-uuringute AS' data, compiled for ERR, tell a story. Free's support level waned to as low as 2%, from above the threshold needed to sit at the Riigikogu (5%), in the space of a year.

The Free Party has seen a nationwide revolt with several members quitting the its governing board. Current embattled leader Andres Herkel has contacted the various factions in an effort to restore order.

Jüri Adams has been a Free Party MP since 2015 and was formerly with IRL (Now Pro Patria).

Artur Talvik has since started the 'Biodiversity Party'. Other parties seeing discord include Centre, whose Narva branch has defected.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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