2019 Riigikogu Election

United Left Party submits candidate list ahead of Riigikogu elections

20.01.19 ... The non-parliamentary Estonian United Left Party (EÜVP) has filed a list of 11 candidates for the upcoming Riigikogu elections, to run in 11 of Estonia's 12 electoral districts.

Centre and Pro Patria spend most on electioneering to year end 2018

18.01.19 ... According to end of year financial reports, the parties which have spent the most on electioneering are Centre and Isamaa/Pro Patria, each splashing out in excess of quarter of a million Euros to year end.

Fake account activity carried out without party knowledge, says EKRE deputy

18.01.19 ... The recent use of social media fake accounts by Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) youth wing leader Ruuben Kaalep happened without the party's knowledge, says party deputy chair Jaak Madison.

Tallinna TV to take politics show off air during election period

18.01.19 ... Tallinna TV (TTV), a municipality-owned digital TV station which, as its name suggests, broadcasts in the capital but also has transmitters at several other locations including Pärnu, is due to take its Spot on (Estonian: Otse kümnesse) current affairs show from the air in the run-up to the elections. The reason is two of its leading lights, Peeter Ernits and Jakko Väli, are running in the general election in March.

Ten parties, 18 independents registered for 2019 general election

18.01.19 ... Thursday evening 18.00 EST was the deadline for Estonia's parties and Riigikogu hopefuls to submit their nominations for the 2019 general election on 3 March. Eight parties handed in full lists, including all those currently in the Riigikogu.

Richness of Life to hand in candidate list by Thursday deadline

17.01.19 ... Newcomers to the political scene the Richness of Life party are to hand in their candidate list to the electoral committee on Thursday, and have announced their number one candidate, Mihkel Kangur, is to run in the North Tallinn, Haabersti and Kristiine district of Tallinn.

Socialite Anu Saagim throws in lot with Green Party

17.01.19 ... Media personality Anu Saagim is set to run for the Estonian Greens at the Riigikogu election in March.

Estonia 200 unveils its full election candidate list

17.01.19 ... The newly-formed Estonia 200 party has announced its full candidate list for the March general election, which includes recently departed daily Postimees editor Lauri Hussar, public sector development manager Meelis Niinepuu, and party chair Kristina Kallas as well as former defence minister Margus Tsahkna.

Ombudsman: Kaalep use of psedonyms constitutes fraudulent activity

16.01.19 ... Tarmu Tammerk, ethics ombudsman to the Estonian Public Broadcaster, ERR, has said that the actions of the leader of the youth wing of the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) Ruuben Kaalep in posting on social media and in the national media under a fake name, constitute fraudulent activity.

EKRE election candidate admits fake social media accounts, article pen name

16.01.19 ... Head of the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) youth wing Ruuben Kaalep has admitted that both he and members of his party have knowingly posted in social media under false names, with Mr Kaalep even getting two opinion pieces published in daily Eesti Päevaleht (EPL) under a pseudonym.

Gallery: Isamaa/Pro Patria presents its electoral candidate list

16.01.19 ... Isamaa/Pro Patria is the latest party to officially present its full candidate list for the March election, its principal members proceeding as per tradition up the hill to the electoral commission office on Toompea.

Gallery: Free Party formally registers its election candidate list

16.01.19 ... Candidate-announcing season continues apace in the run up to the March general election, with the Free Party officially presenting its full candidate list to the voting commission on Wednesday.

Estonia 200 manifesto exclusive in Postimees raises ethics concerns

16.01.19 ... Editor-in-chief of daily Postimees, Lauri Hussar, is leaving the paper and joining Estonia 200. This step has prompted questions as to Mr Hussar's ethics, seeing as Postimees was the only publication last year to initially run Estonia 200's manifesto when the group first went public.

Pro Patria introduces campaign platform, sets out to compete with EKRE

15.01.19 ... Pro Patria introduced its campaign platform on Tuesday, emphasising the party's stance on pensions as well as its focus on a nationalist agenda, in line with other recent efforts to mobilise against the threat to its voter share that is the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE). Other points include raising the income tax exemption for families as well as what the party refers to as a "tax peace" for the coming four years.

Number of independent Riigikogu candidates increases to five

15.01.19 ... Along with parties submitting their official candidate lists, several independents have nominated themselves as candidates in the upcoming general election on 3 March. While citizens Jüri Malsub and Veiko Tani submitted their papers already earlier, Sergei Svjatušenko, Risto Nahkor and Üllar Kruustik added theirs on Tuesday morning.

Gallery: Centre Party submits election candidate list

15.01.19 ... A delegation of Prime Minister Jüri Ratas' Centre Party stopped by the State Electoral Office on Tuesday morning to hand in its list of 125 candidates for the upcoming general election on 3 March.

Toom, Kõlvart both attracted to potential governmental role

15.01.19 ... Two Centre Party leading lights who, by their own admission, have their eye on a government post following the March general election, MEP Yana Toom and Tallinn City Council chair Mihhail Kõlvart, are somewhat more lukewarm about sitting in the Riigikogu.

Gallery: Reform officially submits candidate list

15.01.19 ... The Reform party has submitted its full candidate list to the electoral committee.

Haapsalu mayor files alleged online death threat police complaint

15.01.19 ... Mayor of the western Estonian town of Haapsalu, Urmas Sukles has filed a police complaint regarding an internet comment under a video in which he appears, endorsing the candidacy of Jaanus Karilaid (Centre), running in the Lääne-, Saare- and Hiiumaa district in the 3 March general election.

Katri Raik citizenship proposals meet opposition and some support

14.01.19 ... Opinions have been divided on interior minister Katri Raik's (SDE) proposal to give stateless persons in Estonia the chance to obtain citizenship under simplified rules, including opposition from some of own party members.

Postimees editor-in-chief forced to quit following Estonia 200 candidacy

14.01.19 ... Editor-in-chief of daily Postimees Lauri Hussar has had to step down from the role to join newly formed party Estonia 200. Mr Hussar informed Postimees' owner Eesti Meedia, one of two major commerical media groups in Estonia, of his intention to run for Estonia 200 at the elections on 3 March, and the group terminated his employment on the same day, citing editorial independence issues.

Mihkel Kangur made Richness of Life prime minister candidate

14.01.19 ... Richness of Life, a spin-off of the Free Party and one of the newcomers in this year's general election, chose ecologist Mihkel Kangur as its candidate for prime minister on Sunday.

Party chairs take stock of 'nervous' 2019 election campaign

14.01.19 ... Estonia's parties as well as candidates are "jittery" in the ongoing Riigikogu election campaign, chairwomen and chairmen of the main political parties find. Several of them are saying that while plenty of the issues are worth a broader debate, the competition generally refuses to engage.

Reform reciprocates Centre challenge with tax cuts and other promises

13.01.19 ... The Reform Party had its pre-election conference on Saturday evening, preceded by a party board meeting, with both convocations providing plenty of policy and vision pronouncements. Centre had already held its conference earlier in the day; the Free Party also held its own conference on Saturday.

SDE responds to Centre and Reform conferences with words and T-shirts

13.01.19 ... Prime Minister Jüri Ratas' speech at the Centre Party's pre-election conference on Saturday neglected to cover the topic of integration, according to Social Democratic Party (SDE) leader Jevgeni Ossinovski.

Centre Party expels 14 with criminal records

13.01.19 ... The ruling coalition Centre Party has expelled 14 people due to criminal records, it is reported.

PM: Elections watershed between progress for many or regress for the few

12.01.19 ... Ruling coalition Centre Party held its pre-election conference on Saturday, with a keynote speech by party leader and prime minister, Jüri Ratas, and the endorsing of its candidate list for the March general election.

Estonia 200 unveils full candidate list and manifesto on Sunday

12.01.19 ... Newly established party Estonia 200 is to announce its full candidate list on Sunday, as well as unveil its election manifesto.

EKRE mulls forming 'defence units' after poster defacing, death threats

11.01.19 ... The Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) has said it might set up ''defence units'' aimed at protecting its members, according to party deputy chair Martin Helme.

Gallery: SDE second party to submit candidate lists for Riigikogu elections

11.01.19 ... The coalition Social Democratic Party (SDE) on Friday became the second party to submit its candidate lists and other required paperwork to the State Electoral Office ahead of the 2019 Riigikogu elections.

Centre requests two-week extension to file fourth quarter report

11.01.19 ... Citing the illness of the individual responsible for the party's accountancy, the coalition Centre Party has requested a two-week extension on filing its fourth quarter statement of revenue and expenditure with the Estonian Supervisory Committee on Party Financing (ERJK).

Estonia 200 raises €66,000 in donations in fourth quarter

11.01.19 ... Estonia 200, which announced its official registration as a political party in mid-November, brought in a total of €66,000 in donations in the fourth quarter of 2018, while expenses totalled €90,366.

Reform over €750,000 in the black in 2018

11.01.19 ... The opposition Reform Party, who in recent years had faced a complicated financial situation, earned revenue in the amount of nearly €2 million while spending €1.2 million last year.

Opinion: Poster campaign non-story in itself, but could prove watershed

10.01.19 ... This week's headlines have been dominated by a poster campaign supposed to highlight the ongoing divided society existing in Estonia, ie the split between Estonians and the Russian-speaking minority. This has been something of a storm in an eggcup, however, and won't make much of an impact on polling day in March, assuming that was even its intention.

Centre wants to expand free public transport in Estonia

10.01.19 ... Public transport in Tallinn is currently free for all registered residents of the capital city. The coalition Centre Party, however, intends to expand free public transport in Tallinn to all Estonian residents, part of a broader effort to ultimately provide free transport throughout Estonia.

Irene Käosaar quits Estonia 200 following Monday's ad stunt

10.01.19 ... Irene Käosaar, director of the Integration Foundation, quit Estonia 200 on Thursday.

Russian state media compares Estonia 200 ad campaign to apartheid

10.01.19 ... The ad campaign organised by Estonia 200 earlier this week did not go unnoticed by Russian media, the pro-Kremlin part of which drew a comparison between the campaign and apartheid, daily Postimees writes.

January ratings: Reform surpasses Centre in popularity

10.01.19 ... According to the results of the latest survey commissioned by daily Postimees and conducted by Kantar Emor, the opposition Reform Party has narrowly surpassed the coalition Centre Party in popularity this month.

SDE economic programme focuses on education, e-state development

09.01.19 ... Introduced by party chairman Jevgeni Ossinovski on Wednesday, the economic programme of the coalition Social Democratic Party (SDE) ahead of the upcoming Riigikogu elections focuses on education, the development of the e-state as well as a green economy.

Gallery: EKRE submits candidate lists for Riigikogu elections

09.01.19 ... Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) representatives Jaak Madison and Henn Põlluaas submitted their party's candidate lists to the State Electoral Office on Wednesday.

Kristina Kallas: We did not anticipate people would take such offence

09.01.19 ... In an interview on ETV's "Ringvaade" on Tuesday evening, Estonia 200 chairwoman Kristina Kallas said that her party did not anticipate that their Monday ads, which divided the platforms at Tallinn's Hobujaama tram stop into sides for Estonians and Russians, would offend some people and thus impede on the delivery of their actual message.

Raik: Estonia 200 ads reminiscent of Nazi Germany

08.01.19 ... Commenting on Estonia 200's recent advertising stunt in Tallinn, Minister of the Interior Katri Raik (SDE), the junior coalition party's top candidate for Ida-Viru County in the upcoming Riigikogu elections, said on Vikerraadio's Tuesday broadcast of Uudis+ that the campaign reminded her of Nazi Germany.

Kristina Kallas: Our ads drew attention to existing issue

08.01.19 ... Speaking at a press conference held on Tuesday morning, Estonia 200 chairwoman Kristina Kallas explained that her party's goal was to use the controversial ads put up at Tallinn's Hobujaama tram stop to draw attention to "segregation" in Estonian society, adding that it did not consider the ad campaign unethical.

Controversial ads at Tallinn tram stop replaced by Estonia 200 ads

08.01.19 ... Early on Monday morning, commuters in Central Tallinn were met with the sight of a series of bold, bilingual advertisements dividing each side of the central Hobujaama tram stop in half, with the ads on the left, in blue, stating "Here only Estonians" and the ads on the right, in red, stating "Here only Russians." By Tuesday morning, the controversial ads had been replaced — by ads for Estonia 200.

Latvia on brink of four-party coalition sign of things to come in Estonia?

04.01.19 ... Here at ERR News we don't normally cover stories outside Estonia or which don't directly involve the country or its citizens. However, breakthrough talks in the formation of a new coalition government in Estonia's southern neighbour, Latvia make it timely to look at what's going on there, comparing it with the party political landscape here in Estonia.

Party finance watchdog wants Centre to pay back €220,000 in lump sum

07.01.19 ... The Estonian Supervisory Committee on Party Financing (ERJK) does not want to give the Centre Party the opportunity to pay back in instalments the €220,000 deemed by the courts to be a prohibited donation.

European Parliament election ads not spared from upcoming outdoor ad ban

07.01.19 ... Police in Estonia are of the opinion that when the ban on outdoor political advertising enters into effect on 23 January ahead of the 3 March Riigikogu elections, political parties may not use this time to begin publicly advertising their candidates for the European Parliament elections taking place in May.

Kallas: EKRE danger to constitutional order, cooperation impossible

06.01.19 ... The Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) introduced its campaign platform on Saturday, further reiterating its national-conservative course. Commenting on it, Reform Party chairwoman Kaja Kallas said on Sunday that it is now clearer than ever that Reform won't be able to work with EKRE in a potential future coalition.

EKRE platform: Lower taxes, fewer abortions, get a billion dollars from US

06.01.19 ... The Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) introduced its election platform on Saturday. Beyond the usual anti-immigration and social conservative message, the party has crow-barred a broad selection of popularly debated issues into its platform, ranging from stopping Rail Baltica to building motorways, a demand for fewer abortions and writing a conservative definition of marriage into the constitution. And it wants a billion dollars from the United States.

Government spends €53,000 on chartered flights in 2018

05.01.19 ... When the prime minister's schedule conflicts with that of commercial flights, the state charters a private aircraft. Prime Minister Jüri Ratas (Centre) used a chartered aircraft on nine occasions in 2018, with a contribution out of the budget of the Prime Minister's Office of €52,875.

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