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Elections and the electoral system in Russia

Elections and the electoral system in Russia are quite long (counting from Novgorod feudal republic and county councils XVI - XVII cc.), But intermittent history (with long intervals of epoch-making related despotic forms of government). At the beginning of XX century the rise of a powerful democratic movement (the first Russian Revolution) has led to the election law in the first State Duma on 11 December 1905 This law can hardly be called democratic, as it provide unequal representation of different segments of the population. Even worse was zakon1907 PM For the whole period of its existence (1906 - 1907) State Duma was elected 4 times, twice king disbanded ahead of schedule. The rights of the representative body were severely limited. In the Soviet era with the transition to a one-party system, and then eliminate internal opposition, the elections became a purely formal character turned into "elections without choice".

Only in the late 1980's. situation began to change radically. First, in a very limited scale in the elections to local authorities in 1987, and then extensively in 1989 on the election of the Congress of People's Deputies came to be applied alternative vote - voters the choice is between two or several candidates. But then, at the election of 1989,of seats (750 of 2250) had already been reserved for the Communist Party and in fact subordinate to her NGOs, with an indication of whom the number of seats that, in essence,is a modification of the same curia system, introduced in the early century. Election of People's Deputies of P year later rejected this procedure as undemocratic.

March 17, 1991 hosted the first-ever national referendum, and 12 June the same year - the first in the history of Russia presidential election. During the period of instability in the country March 26, 1993 At an extraordinary emergency IX Congress of People's Deputies of Russia decided to hold on April 25 1993 referendum. He brought out on 4 questions: the confidence President of Russia, the trust MPs, the Congress and the Supreme Soviet of Approval of the Government since 1992 Socio-economic policy of early presidential elections and people's deputies. Most voting in a referendum of citizens voted for the confidence the president and MPs, did not endorse government policies and opposed early elections.

December 12, 1993 Has a referendum on the Constitution RF. In his unopposed presidential bill was introduced Constitution.The night before he formally approved the Constitutional Council created by the President .. The outcomes of the referendum began, more than 58% accepted participate in the referendum of voters in favor of the adoption of the Constitution, it about 1 / 3 of all citizens eligible to vote.

The current electoral system of Russia was the result of large-scale electoral reform 1993 - 1995 years., which began a nationwide vote on draft Constitution. The Constitution (Article 32) stipulates: "Citizens of Russia have the right to elect and be elected to public authorities and local governments, as well as participate in the referendum. " Item 3 Article 32 defines the range of persons deprived of their electoral votes: "I do not have right to elect and be elected citizens unfit to plead, and kept in places of imprisonment upon conviction. It the only restriction allows us to speak about universal suffrage in RF. Universal, equal and direct suffrage is enshrined in article 81 Constitution. In RF suffrage belongs to all citizens of Russia, 18 years of age, except for citizens recognized by the court incompetent, and citizens held in custody under entered into legal force of a court sentence.

Timmy Dunn For Congress
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