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Kivirähk: Hypothetical support for Estonia 200 at 9%

Anvar Samost, Juhan Kivirähk and Urmet Kook discussing the results of the October party ratings. 18 October 2018.
Anvar Samost, Juhan Kivirähk and Urmet Kook discussing the results of the October party ratings. 18 October 2018. Source: ERR

While two new budding parties were not included in the latest party ratings survey, sociologist Juhan Kivirähk calculated that in the 2019 Riigikogu elections, Estonia 200's support would total 9% and the Biodiversity Party's 1%. Estonia 200 would steal the most votes from the Reform Party, but also from the Social Democratic Party (SDE) and the Centre Party.

This June and September, Turu-uuringute AS measured voters' attitudes toward the establishment of new political parties with two questions: is it necessary for one or two new political parties to be formed in Estonia on top of existing parties, and would voters be willing to vote for them.

"But one could not conclude based on the fact that 15% of voters would consider voting for Estonia 200 and 10% for the Biodiversity Party that this willingness would actually be realised in reality," said Kivirähk, who conducted the study.

"This time we approached the problem more constructively and asked voters whether they would be willing to change their previously stated preference if new parties were established," he explained. "There were 9% of such voters."

These respondents in turn were asked that, if they were prepared to change their preference, which of the two would they vote for — Estonia 200 or the Biodiversity Party?

Of the 9% that would consider changing their preference, 68% would vote for Estonia 200, while 9% would vote for the Biodiversity Party. 23% indicated they were unable to answer.

"Based on these responses, we made changes to previously indicated voting preferences," Kivirähk said. "In the new party rankings produced as a result, Estonia 200 with its 9% support came in fifth place, following but practically equalling the Social Democratic Party (SDE). The Biodiversity Party's haul would be the support of 1% of voters."

Support at the expense of major parties

Estonia 200 would end up stealing support from all established parties. The Reform Party would lose the most support (4%), but both the Centre Party and SDE would lose 2%, and the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE), Pro Patria and the Estonian Greens would each lose 1% support as well.

Estonia 200 would be more popular among young voters in particular — 13% of voters aged 18-24 and 17% of voters aged 25-34 would vote for them. It would have the support of 10% of Estonians and 7% of voters of other ethnic backgrounds.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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