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Why Russia’s presidential election doesn’t matter

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Russia is holding its presidential election this weekend, and we already know who will win: Vladimir Putin, who's been in power since 2000.
russia presidential election

Russia is holding its presidential election this weekend, and we already know who will win.

Vladimir Putin has been in power since 2000 and is set to be confirmed for another six-year term as President.

Here’s why the outcome of this election is already clear.

Russian elections

While Russian elections may appear legitimate to outsiders, experts argue the outcomes are pre-determined. The control and power of Putin and his government means no opponents have been successful.

Since the Russian President came to power, several opposition leaders have died, including Alexei Navalny.

Navalny was a prominent critic of Putin’s regime, but was blocked from running for office on charges of corruption that were widely viewed as politically motivated. He died at a Siberian prison colony last month.

Putin in power

In the late 1990s, Putin was promoted from the head of the Russian security agency to Prime Minister under President Boris Yeltsin.

Yeltsin, who had been in poor health for years, resigned in 1999, making Putin the President. He hasn’t lost an election since.

In 2020, Russia held a referendum to change its rules around how many six-year terms its Presidents can serve. It gave Putin the green light to serve two more terms, extending his rule until 2036. International observers didn’t consider the referendum legitimate.

Russian presidential election results

Putin is expected to be confirmed as the winner of this weekend’s election early on Monday morning AEDT.

Internal polling published in state media last month found 75% of people planned to vote for Putin.

Voting is not mandatory in Russia.

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