Estonia’s parliament failed to select a new president on Tuesday, and the task of picking a head of state now passes to an electoral college. That is likely to strengthen the chances of Mailis Reps from the Center Party, a grouping traditionally backed by the country’s Russian minority.After three votes this week, no candidate managed to get the two-thirds majority needed. The contest now shifts to the electoral college — comprising the 101 MPs and 234 local government leaders — which will be convened September 24.Reps and candidates backed by smaller parties have already been campaigning across the country to garner the support of local government officials, many of whom are angry about a major administrative reform introduced last year. Enacted by the Reform Party-led government, it will eliminate many smaller local administrations, making the presidential vote the last opportunity their leaders have to express their frustration.The main target of that frustration is likely to be whomever the Reform Party nominates as its candidate. The party is split between Siim Kallas, a former European Commission vice president and the Reform candidate in the parliamentary votes, and the country’s Foreign Minister, Marina Kaljurand.Although the Estonian presidency is largely ceremonial, the incumbent Toomas Hendrik Ilves effectively used the position to build his country’s reputation abroad at a time of growing worries about Russia’s intentions toward the Baltic region. Also On POLITICO Russia casts shadow over Estonia’s presidential vote By Harry Cooper
Dead & Company continue to impress on every stop of their tour. Last night was a show at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, MO, a show that included two big tour debuts: “Let It Grow” and “Black Throated Wind.” Thanks to taper Scott T., we now have full audio from this tremendous show. Listen in below: Let’s just say that, any time a show opens with “Shakedown Street,” you know you’re in for a treat. Setlist: Dead & Company at Scottrade Center, St. Louis, MO – 11/20/15Set I: Shakedown Street bw, Brown Eyed Woman jm, New Minglewood Blues bw, They Love Each Other jm, Black Throated Wind bw, Sugaree jm, The Music Never Stopped bwSet II: Iko Iko bw, Eyes Of The World bw > Let It Grow bw > Lady With A Fan jm > Terrapin Station bw > Drums > Space > The Wheel > Looks Like Rain bw, Sugar Magnolia bwE:Ripple bw jm Load remaining images
OKLAHOMA CITY — After coming back from a 13-point fourth-quarter deficit, the game was right there for the Utah Jazz, who took a four-point lead in the final two minutes Tuesday night against Oklahoma City.Then Russell Westbrook happened.The triple-double machine scored 12 of his game-high 43 points in the final 2:05 of the game as he nearly singlehandedly willed the Thunder to a 109-106 victory at Chesapeake Energy Arena.The win was big for Thunder, who improved to 35-25 and pulled within two games of the Jazz, who fell to 37-23.“Obviously Russell made some exceptional plays coming down the stretch,” said OKC coach Billy Donovan. “We have a player in Russell that has a great internal belief in himself and he is always playing with a level of optimism . . . enthusiasm and a never-die attitude all the time.”“He played great, that’s who he is,” said Utah coach Quin Snyder. “He made the plays down the stretch. He does that.”The Jazz, who had won the first two games of their road trip, at Milwaukee and Washington, had made a gallant comeback after trailing by double-digit margins for most of the game. But Westbrook scored on five straight possessions for OKC, including a 3-pointer and a three-point play, to get the lead back for his team.Utah had chances in the final minute, but missed a pair of 3-point attempts and then turned the ball over with a couple of seconds left, only its seventh of the game after getting 24 two nights earlier in Washington.The key sequence came after the Jazz had called timeout with 5.7 seconds left down 108-106. Snyder called a play for Joe Johnson, who drove the baseline, only to make a poor pass trying to hit Gordon Hayward. The Thunder’s Jerami Grant made one of two free throws, but the Jazz couldn’t get off a possible game-tying three in the final 1.1 seconds.Snyder explained what the Jazz were trying to do after the timeout.“We had Joe and were going to play through the post with Joe. He’s been clutch for us. They switched (Steven) Adams out on him and he drove the ball, which was a good decision. He just happened to turn it over.”Johnson shouldered the blame for the final turnover, saying, “I just tried to get to the basket and I thought he was open, but he wasn’t. I could have probably tried to lay it up, but I saw him and I tried to make the right play.”Snyder said the game wasn’t lost on the final play and pointed out that the Jazz had two 3-point shots before that, by Hayward with 21 seconds left and by George Hill with 11 seconds left.“We had two wide-open threes, we just didn’t make them,” he said. “I don’t know that you could ask for more than that.”The game was probably lost in the first half when the Thunder shot lights out and the Jazz defense wasn’t as good as it was later in the game. OKC began the game by hitting an astounding 12 straight 3-point shots, including four each by Westbrook and recently-acquired Doug McDermott.Despite OKC’s 60 percent first-half shooting and 92.3 percent 3-point shooting (Westbrook finally broke the string with a miss with 32 seconds left), the Jazz trailed just 61-53 at the half.“Our defense wasn’t too good at the beginning of the game,” said Snyder. “Eventually our defense got a little better.”Either that or the Thunder finally cooled off down the stretch as they hit just 3 of 9 from long range in the second half and only 43.9 percent from the field.The Jazz trailed 94-81 with under eight minutes left, but behind the play of Rodney Hood and Hill, who finished with 18 and 15 points, respectively, the Jazz went on an 18-2 run to take a 99-96 lead with 2:13 left.Westbrook hit a 15-footer in the lane and then Hood made three free throws. Westbrook scored on a drive and layup and then Rudy Gobert scored in the lane. Next, Westbrook hit a pair of free throws before Johnson made a step-back three with 47 seconds left to make it 106-102. Those would be Utah’s final points.Westbrook then hit a 3-pointer from the left side and after Hayward’s miss, he drove for another layup and was fouled with 15.5 seconds left to give OKC the lead.Hayward finished with a team-high 19 points but went scoreless in the final quarter, missing all three of his shots. Rudy Gobert collected his 41st double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds, while Johnson and Alec Burks each scored 13 off the bench.The Jazz will finally be back at home for the first time in two weeks with a game against Minnesota Wednesday night at Vivint Arena.