Estonian lawmakers vote against proposed Reform Party-led coalition

The Estonian parliament Monday voted not to grant Estonian Reform Party chairwoman Kaja Kallas the authority to form a coalition government.

Among the total of 100 parliament members present in the sitting with another one absent, 45 voted in favor of granting Kallas the authority, while 53 voted against, with two abstentions. Kallas needed the support of at least 51 lawmakers.

Chosen by Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid as the first prime minister candidate on April 5, Kallas proposed a coalition of the Reform Party and the Social Democratic Party, and published their own proposed coalition principles on Saturday.

After Kallas, Estonian Prime Minister Juri Ratas, chairman of the Center Party, is expected to be the next prime minister candidate to form a new coalition government.

The Estonian Center Party, the Conservative People’s Party of Estonia and Isamaa, signed the coalition agreement on April 8, after the announcement on April 6 of the lineup of the 15 ministerial posts (including the prime minister) with five ministerial appointments for each party.

In the parliamentary elections held on March 3, five political parties won seats in the 14th Riigikogu for a four-year term.

Out of the 101 seats in total, the Reform Party has 34 seats, the Center Party 26, the Conservative People’s Party 19, the Isamaa Party 12 and the Social Democratic Party 10.