New ruling coalition in Estonia
In Estonia Jüri Ratas, up to now an opposition politician and the leader of the left-leaning Centre Party, has been confirmed as the new prime minister and has forged a coalition with the two junior partners in the previous coalition government. His predecessor Taavi Rõivas of the liberal Reform Party was toppled by a vote of no confidence. Estonia's press takes stock of the change of government.
Anomalies in Estonian politics
There are a number of anomalies in Estonian politics which the current change of government has highlighted, PR expert Ott Lumi points out in Eesti Päevaleht:
“Why isn't there a Russian party in Estonia? Why isn't there a liberal party in Estonia? Why isn't there a party with a leftist ideology? Why is the political leadership considered illegitimate? Why do personal relations play such a big role? These are the crucial 'why questions' in Estonian politics. You could say this is all nothing new. But it seems that all these questions will play a vital role in Estonian politics in the coming years. … We know that the Russian voters have backed the Centre Party led by Edgar Savissaar for the last twenty years. He has been a strategic gift in politics. What will happen [once he's gone]?”
Will the coalition partners work as a team?
Estonia's new Prime Minister Jüri Ratas on Monday signed a coalition agreement with the junior partners of the former coalition government. Õhtuleht expects the new government to provide stability for the country:
“Already after the last elections the coalition talks went on for far too long and the ministers were reshuffled several times. We've had five foreign ministers in the past two years. That doesn't put our country's leadership in a good light. At the same time, of course, bearing in mind the major changes that await us according to the new coalition agreement, you can hardly expect things to remain calm. How willing are the three government parties to cooperate? Judging by the distribution of ministerial posts it's clear that the Centre Party was given no key ministries: the Social Democrats and Conservative People's Party kept the Foreign, Interior, Justice and Finance Ministries for themselves.”