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Desolation of the First

Desolation of the First

Dmitry Medvedev refuses to participate in pre-election debate. It was declared on Monday by the press-service of his campaign headquarters. Formally Dmitry Medvedev, having taken advantage of item 10 of the 52 article of the Federal law "About Presidential Elections of the Russian Federation", declared in the CEC of the Russian Federation refusal from "participations in the joint propaganda actions carried out on channels of the all-Russian and regional state organizations of tele-broadcasting", - informed in the press-service of the candidate. It in no way became unexpectedness, about Medvedev's decision to refuse from the debate with clowns we wrote already in the last year when the question itself appeared.


Entering debate the successor naturally occupies one level with the opponent but there are no opponents capable even to come nearer to the second round, not talking about winning. Actually, it was done by the efforts of the Kremlin. Rogozin is in Bruxelles, Glazyev is going to fly to Astana, Khodorkovsky works as the packer in Кrasnokamensk. Who else remains?.. Well, nobody, in general. Even such imaginary size as Kasyanov was pushed away so that there will absolutely no risk.


Well, at last, we shall admit, to debate with Bogdanov - is pure clownery. Besides, on what theme? As Mister Bogdanov was made the candidate in presidents?


All the more so there is nothing to discuss with Zhirinovsky or Zyuganov - these two everything, that they could, said already a lot of years ago and not once.


Actually, the fact that there will be no debate - is not good. But they simply couldn't take place. If there will be real candidate that could resist Medvedev on these elections with chances to win, then, certainly, he would not dare to refuse debate with him simply because it would mean guaranteed defeat for him.


But it - if there will be someone equal. And what for to debate with servants?..


Absence of real competition on elections, absence of real choice - here you are the drama of today's Russia. Debates are pure nonsense, there is no use crying over spilt milk.


The world press at last was surprised to understand that on presidential elections the candidate number one Dmitry Medvedev would compete, as a matter of fact, with himself. Though already in autumn everything was clear. So, I gave estimation to an observer of "Frankfurter Rundshau" Florian Hassel in November, during parliamentary elections, no changes happened since then. Here you are what 2 months after interview the newspaper writes.


Anatoly Baranov, editor-in-chief of FORUM.msk

The List of the Candidates Is Becoming Clear


The Russian oppositional politician Michael Kasyanov was debarred from presidential elections on March, 2nd. The Kremlin took advantage of created for that purpose in the beginning of president Putin's management special tool: candidates or civil movements which were not presented in the parliament controlled by the Kremlin, should get at least 2 million signatures all over Russia for participation in elections or organization of referendum. By means of that norm the Kremlin already repeatedly tried to exclude objectionable candidates on elections or not to let referendum take place.


On Sunday it affected Michael Kasjanov. On December, 8th, 2007 oppositional politician who occupied at Putin not for one year a post of the prime-minister declared that he planed to stand for election on March, 2nd. He managed to get 2,067 million signatures. On Sunday the CEC of the Russian Federation declared that 13,36% of signatures had formal lacks or were forged. It much more than officially supposed 5 percent border of void signatures.


Thus, the CEC debarred Kasyanov from elections. The oppositional politician can appeal against this decision in the Supreme court of the Russian Federation - though on a background of the control of the Kremlin over the Russian system of justice this enterprise looks unpromising.


Kasyanov named the Russian political system totalitarian. According to former prime-minister, the violence and dictatorship are the major principles of a mode. He wrote about it in the electronic message directed to many news agencies. Press-secretary of Kasyanov accused the authorities in the fact that they didn't let competitor of the candidate Dmitry Medvedev to elections.


Kasyanov headed the Russian government from the moment of Putin's coming to power in 2000. His appointment was some kind of transaction between Putin and his predecessor Boris Yeltsin. On February, 24th, 2004 Putin forced the prime-minister Kasyanov to resign, then the last positioned himself as opposition. However among the majority of the Russians Kasyanov has doubtful reputation because of persistent rumours about his corruption. According to interrogations, ex-prime-minister is supported only by about 1% of the voters.

Bargain with the leader of the Communists

Kasyanov's removal from elective process narrows a field of candidates in presidents. Alongside with successor of Putin and obvious favorite Dmitry Medvedev the leader of the communists Gennady Zyuganov, close to the Kremlin ultranationalist Vladimir Zhirinovsky and unknown Andrey Bogdanov appear in the ballots.


As a result the long-term leader of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation ostensibly as oppositional politician is the only one whose participation creates visibility of alternative elections. According to the ex-functionary of the Communist Party Anatoly Baranov, there's nothing to say about Zyuganov's oppositional positions. As the politician declared in the interview to FR, Zyuganov incurred the obligation to participate in elections before the assistant to the chapter of the Kremlin administration Vladislav Surkov already in 2007. As a reciprocal step the Kremlin "let" the Communists enter the Duma after December elections.

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