October 21, 2021

Beyond Going Long

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Under Putin’s leadership, United Russia will occupy 324 of the 450 seats in the State Duma

The pro-Kremlin’s United Russia party would occupy 324 of the 450 seats in the State Duma, the lower house of parliament, and thus retain a constitutional majority.

Based on the election results for September 17-19, the Communist Party of the Russian Federation (KPRF) will get 57 seats.

Meduza.io reported the seat distribution, referring to Tuesday’s statement from Russia’s Central Election Commission (ÚVK). It also announced that it has already counted 100% of the votes cast, but will not announce the final results of the elections until Friday.

Only Russia for Truth will have 27 deputies in the State Duma and 21 deputies in the lower house of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR).

For the first time, a new political entity called “The New People”, which will represent 13 deputies, made its way to Parliament. The New People’s Party was established only last year and is described as a Kremlin-sponsored project.

The Civic Forum and the Nation and the Growth Party will have one deputy in the House of Representatives.

Five seats are filled by candidates elected to Parliament without the support of any of the political parties.

Maintaining the dominant position of the United Russia party in the State Duma was crucial for the Kremlin ahead of the presidential elections in 2024.

Navalny’s recommendation

The current term of President Vladimir Putin will end this year. He is expected to try to be reelected or choose a different strategy than staying in power. According to Kremlin analysts and critics, parliament may be key to both scenarios.

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Most opposition politicians were excluded from participating in the parliamentary elections by decision of the authorities. Russian authorities have declared organizations affiliated with jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny to be extremist, while the new law prohibits anyone associated with them in any way from running for public office.

Therefore, as part of the Smart Voting project, the team around Navalny recommended that its supporters support candidates of other parties in the elections, in order to help “close” the candidates of United Russia.

The elections were marked by numerous complaints of electoral violations and irregularities. Nor did outside observers, usually delegated by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, participate in the conference.