Ex-Centre Party member Raimond Kaljulaid choosing between SDE, Reform

Tallinn SDE leader Raimond Kaljulaid.
Tallinn SDE leader Raimond Kaljulaid. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

MP Raimond Kaljulaid, who won over 20,000 votes running as an independent in the European parliament elections in this May after breaking ties with the Centre Party, is in negotiations with potential membership in mind with both the Social Democratic Party (SDE) and the Reform Party, Postimees reported on Saturday.

Political rivals keeping an eye on Kaljulaid's endeavors have told Postimees that this is a possibility for the non-aligned MP to maintain media exposure and profile and also to underpin his political score among the forces that would like to see him in their ranks in the 2021 local elections. 

Kaljulaid, who left the Centre Party after the Riigikogu elections in March, has promised to decide about his party affiliation before the end of this year.

"Of course I'm also meeting with people whose advice I value. But it is definitely premature to say that some kind of a decision has been made," he said.

Where earlier also Estonia 200 and Greens have been mentioned as potential options for Kaljulaid, now only two parties are left on the list: Reform and SDE, Postimees said.

"The parties represented in the Riigikogu today are the ones that they are and that will not change in the next three and a half years. If one of the most important goals was to do everything for the sake of Estonia getting a sensible government, then that problem cannot be solved outside the parliament. It is not thinkable in any other manner than through this composition of the parliament. That means that you have to look to the parties of the Riigikogu in the first place," Kaljulaid said.

"Of course it would be unthinkable of me to find common ground with EKRE or Isamaa. What I also cannot imagine, although it has been talked about: to go back to the Centre Party. Unfortunately, the Centre Party itself has done everything for that to be not possible under any circumstances," the former member of the Centre Party's governing board said. 

SDE and the Reform Party are the two opposition forces in the current Estonian parliament.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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