Ratings: Kaja Kallas most trusted party leader
Reform Party chair Kaja Kallas is the most trustworthy party leader in Estonia, according to one poll. Conversely, Mart Helme (EKRE) is least trusted by the Estonian populace.
The survey, conducted by pollsters Kantar Emor, also asked respondents to rate three other leading politicians, including MEP Marina Kaljurand (SDE), BNS reports.
Second after Kallas came Jüri Ratas (Centre), so far as party leaders went. While Mart Helme was lowest from among heads of the five parliamentary parties, he had a polarizing effect on respondents, rather than yielding non-committal responses, according to Kaisa Esko, survey expert at Kantar Emor.
The top performing political figures for respondents were President Kersti Kaljulaid, and Marina Kaljurand as noted, who topped the poll.
The president, who came in overall second, holds a broadly ceremonial role under the terms of the Estonian constitution, and is not directly elected by the people.
Conversely, Estonia 200 leader Kristina Kallas, Social Democratic Party (SDE) leader Indrek Saar, and Isamaa chief Helir-Valdor Seeder caused the most head-scratching amongst those polled, with around 40 percent ticking the "cannot say" category for each leader's trustworthiness rating.
"The opinions of those who support the coalition and those who don't support it clearly stand apart," Kaisa Esko said of the results.
"Supporters of the Centre Party have no trust at all in Kaja Kallas, and those who opt for the Reform Party have deep mistrust in both Prime Minister Jüri Ratas and EKRE chairman Mart Helme," she added.
"Whereas from EKRE's own voter base, 87 percent place their trust in (Mart) Helme, of the voters of the other two coalition parties, Isamaa and Center Party, for instance, only 22 percent of respondents trusted Helme," Esko continued.
"Helme is successful addressing his own voters, but the mistrust from all other target groups is high," she added, noting the outcomes reflected the continuation of a trend.
"Marina Kaljurand has occupied a high place in trust as well as approval ratings among residents of Estonia already for a long time," she said.
Marina Kaljurand's popularity runs particularly high amongst native Estonian-speaking women, as well as residents of smaller towns and villages.
President Kersti Kaljulaid, who comes in next after Kaljurand, is trusted more by young people and people with higher education.
Kantar Emor's survey polled 1,229 people nationwide, between June 6-13. Respondents were asked about the leaders of the major political parties, two noted candidates in the elections to the European Parliament held at the end of May, and the president of Estonia.
Editor: Andrew Whyte