Estonia Fails to Elect New President

Estonian lawmakers failed to elect a new president on Monday after rejecting the only candidate in the first round of voting.

Only 63 lawmakers voted in favor of Alar Karis, the director of the Estonian National Museum, in a secret ballot on Monday. To be elected, he needed a two-thirds majority in the 101-seat Riigikogu legislature or 68 votes. 

Meanwhile, there were 16 blank votes, and the rest were either absent or abstained.

However, Karis is hoping for a different kind of result on the next voting day.

“Tomorrow’s another day. I trust we’ll get a different kind of result,” Karis, a former auditor, and university head, told local reporters.

Another two voting rounds are scheduled for Tuesday under Estonia’s complicated presidential election system. 

If that fails to produce a result, the election will be moved to a special 208-member electoral college made up of legislators and municipal representatives who will vote in September.


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