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Russia: Duma Vote Outcome Will Show Who’ll Be President In 2024 – OpEd

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Georgy Satarov, a former advisor to Boris Yeltsin who now comments frequently on current Russian politics, says that the results of the Duma elections now taking place in the Russian Federation will show who will be the country’s president three years from now.

If Putin’s United Russia wins an impressive victory, he suggests, that will mean that the Russian people have voted for stability and there won’t be a change in the top position. But if that party doesn’t do well – and the growing number of people who plan to vote suggests that could happen – then change becomes more likely (ura.news/articles/1036282986).

Satarov says he “would compare a social institution like elections with muscles in the human body. If they aren’t used, they atrophy. But if sportsmen actively develop them, they gain as a result. That is the way it is with voting.” And by voting one can send a message and make the act of participation more influential.

“Elections are that civic institution which is called upon to defend society from stupidity and tyranny,” he says. “When we don’t use them, the same thing happens with elections that happens with muscles that are neglected. They atrophy for us and work for others. And we citizens have only one chance to force this institution to work for us. We must actively use it.”

Some Russians mistakenly believe that there is no sense in voting because the powers have already decided on the outcome. But those who think that way do so only because they do not recognize how important elections are when it comes to issues of changing officials at the top, Satarov continues.

Fortunately, Russians are figuring this out; and that’s why far more of them are saying they will vote than did only six months ago. But in addition to providing signals as to the general direction society wants the country to move it, they are “important for another reason: they lead to changes as such.”

“If voters cast their ballots for the party of power, this means that they support stability and the course of Vladimir Putin.” In the past, his standing and that of United Russia were not so closely intertwined but now they are; and that by itself constitutes a real risk for Putin himself in these elections.

If the results go one way, he will remain in power without any significant challenge; if they go in another, he may remain but he will be challenged by those who are confident that the people, that is, the voters, want change in the direction the country is going. 

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Paul Goble

Paul Goble is a longtime specialist on ethnic and religious questions in Eurasia. Most recently, he was director of research and publications at the Azerbaijan Diplomatic Academy. Earlier, he served as vice dean for the social sciences and humanities at Audentes University in Tallinn and a senior research associate at the EuroCollege of the University of Tartu in Estonia. He has served in various capacities in the U.S. State Department, the Central Intelligence Agency and the International Broadcasting Bureau as well as at the Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Mr. Goble maintains the Window on Eurasia blog and can be contacted directly at [email protected] .

One thought on “Russia: Duma Vote Outcome Will Show Who’ll Be President In 2024 – OpEd

  • September 20, 2021 at 12:06 am
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    Putin will win, he brought Russian Federation to the Big Power State, he is a real statesman and best president today in this tiny world we live in.

    Reply

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