Editorial: best for the party. Best for the people?

PHOTO: Urmas Nemvalts

As finance minister chair was emptied of Jürgen Ligi, Reform Party filled it with the strong specialist Maris Lauri. As a long-term foreign minister finally hopped on the Brussels horse, well-known politicians come marching in – while needing to prove themselves in the new roles. 

Foreign minister candidate Keit Pentus-Rosimannus has indeed breathed the intense air of said ministry while acting as adviser to one-time foreign minister Kristiina Ojuland. But that’s over a decade ago, and after that the foreign-policy-chief-to-be went and ploughed the municipal fields for quite a while. But in the bag of Ms Pentus-Rosimannus, there is the experience of Riigikogu vice president, a stint as Prime Minister’s chief of staff, and naturally the many years as environment minister. So she should know how to argue around tables... talking about future colleagues getting together in Brussels.

Presumably, Ms Pentus-Rosimannus will prove a surprise-free and predictable foreign minister. As was to be expected, her comments yesterday were filled with the well-worn words like «trustworthiness», «security» etc. But to have weight in the broader foreign and security policy debate, she will have to try real hard. This time, Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas opted not to apply party-treatment to an expert skilled in the very foreign policy. From the party’s point of view, moving Keit Pentus-Rosimannus along was highly understandable. In the bigger picture, however, this is a newcomer in foreign policy.

Having been thus promoted, feels like the Autorollo-scandal is loosening around the neck of Keit Pentus-Rosimannus – as we recall, Harju County Court failed to find fault with her in the transport company civil case while her husband Rain Rosimannus and others were partially convicted. The court case is still in progress but no criminal charges hover above the future foreign ministerial head.

Mati Raidma placed to be environment minister is surprise for the public: this is an expert in national defence and rescue, a man mighty in Riigikogu to have tackled the related issues as head of National Defence Committee. On the other hand, a day will come to a good parliamentarian to be paid by a portfolio. With five months to go for the current coalition, Mr Raidma the environment minister will not be expected to reinvent a wheel.