A Collapsing Façade – The Russian Duma Election in perspective

Author (Person)
Series Title
Series Details No.14, December 2007
Publication Date 04/12/2007
ISBN 978-951-769-201-4
ISSN 1795-8059
Content Type


The Duma election and its results reinforce the prevailing undemocratic trends in Russia. The changes in electoral laws, the election campaign and its biased coverage in the Russian media, the Russian authorities’ hostile attitude towards international election observation and the so-called Putin’s Plan leave very little hope of democratic
pluralism developing in Russia anytime soon.

Russia’s political system has been built gradually over the years. The system aims at controlling the competition for
power and securing the political elite’s interests. The system is characterised by non-transparent and manipulated
political processes, misleading doublespeak on democratic norms, and the misuse of soft and hard administrative

Putin’s overwhelming popularity does not compensate for the lack of democratic accountability. Likewise, his possible
premiership would not strengthen parliamentarism in Russia because the decision is driven by instrumentalism towards political institutions. Instead, it would create a dangerous precedent for an ad hoc separation of power.

Western actors should be more aware that the stability that Putin is often praised for bringing about is not build
on solid ground, and they should change their policies accordingly. Promoting democracy – and thus long-term
stability – in Russia is in western actors’ interests.

Source Link https://www.fiia.fi/en/publication/a-collapsing-facade-the-russian-duma-election-in-perspective
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