In the elections of senior officials in the regions of the Russian Federation, competition has increased and the number of refusals to register has decreased: 71 out of 75 candidates were able to successfully pass this stage. Such conclusions were announced on Thursday during a round table discussion between the EISI and the Association “Independent Public Monitoring” (NOM).
“We are witnessing a unique election campaign. It is taking place in the context of quite serious geopolitical challenges facing the country. At the same time, the elections are held regularly, on time, in accordance with all procedures of the democratic political process. We have already passed the registration stage and can sum up its preliminary results”, – Vladimir Shapovalov, deputy director of the Institute of History and Politics of the Moscow State Pedagogical University, addressed the participants in the discussion.
During the round table, the traditional report of the Democracy Research Foundation with the results of the analysis of the candidate registration stage was presented. According to the director of the Fund Maxim Grigoriev, the number of refusals to register candidates on the eve of the Single Voting Day has decreased by almost five times. In Buryatia, Tomsk, Kaliningrad and Tambov regions, all those who have come forward are registered.
“More than in 2/3 of the regions there were no refusals in registration, and this is a record value”, the expert stressed.
Director of the Center for Political Analysis and Social Research Pavel Danilin agreed with the conclusions of experts from the Foundation for the Study of Democracy Problems, presenting a detailed analysis of party competition at the stage of candidate registration. Danilin indicated that 40 out of 42 lists of political parties passed the registration stage, that is, the percentage of refusals was less than 5%. In single-member constituencies, the rejection rate is also extremely low at 4%. Of the 28 political parties that have the right to participate in elections, 85% (that is, 24 parties) participate in the electoral race, which, according to the political scientist, can be described as a “very powerful result.”
It is curious that Pavel Danilin called the Sakhalin region a “nest of democracy”, where on the Single Voting Day the struggle will unfold between nine parties. The minimum participation – only five parties – was recorded in North Ossetia, however, these figures are quite high, experts assure.
“Today, the elections are taking place against a complex geopolitical background, and at the same time, in an absolutely normal format, allowing parties to easily compete with each other. This tells us that we are entering a new stage – the selection of candidates for elections to the State Duma. Formally, the new cycle will begin in September “, but now the selection for a new cycle is underway. Parties that actively participate in the election campaign get a serious chance of getting into the State Duma in 2026. On the contrary, those parties that ignore regional and municipal elections lose all chances of success”Danilin is convinced.
But the political observer Alexander Asafov, for his part, refuted the conspiracy beliefs regarding the Single Voting Day, which were expressed by some experts.
“At the start of the campaign, and not only in Moscow, there were some expectations among the expert community and political organizations that the elections would be held somehow differently due to external challenges. But we see that there are no extraordinary circumstances. Initially, rumors were spread that the elections in September will not happen. However, normal life continues, and the elections will be held as planned,” he stated.
In addition, using the example of the election campaign in Moscow, Asafov showed that no artificial obstacles were created for candidates. According to him, 7,326 people submitted their applications, and 6,259 people received a candidate certificate. The percentage of those admitted to the elections is 85.4%, and more than half of those who will not take part in the elections either withdrew their candidacy or were recalled by the parties themselves.
Earlier, Life reported that the elections of heads of regions in fourteen constituent entities of the Russian Federation were scheduled for a single voting day, which will be held on September 11 this year. Where governors retire after June 11, 2022, the vote will take place as early as next year.