Archbishop Urmas Viilma of the Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church (EELK) has published his own recommendation to voters in the upcoming general election on 3 March, with the Centre Party leading the field. Mr Viilma's assessment is based on how many of the church's recommendations ended up included in the platforms of the different political parties.
As he explains, Mr Viilma worked his way through nine party platforms to find out where exactly—and in how many instances—they intersect with the church's own proposals. The result is a ranking of parties according to Christian preferences as the church sees them.
In detail, the archbishop applied a system awarding 0 to 3 points to each political position or proposal of each of the parties he investigated. A proposal going against the church's position, or one that differs entirely, got 0 points. A proposal that goes along with the church's position up to a degree, or comes very close, got 1-2 points. Perfect harmony was awarded 3 points.
Mr Viilma complained on social media that in the case of several parties there was no common ground at all. "In such a case it wasn't possible to award any points at all," he said.
The clear winner is the Centre Party with 32 points, followed by Pro Patria with 28 and the Social Democrats (SDE) with 19 points.
The Reform Party got 17 points, the Free Party 15 points, the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) 14 points and Estonia 200 a meagre 6 points.
The archbishop stressed that every Christian voter still needs to make up their own mind. The most important guideline for any such voter remains holy scripture, Mr Viilma said, which should be the basis for any assessment of a candidate or party.
Editor: Dario Cavegn