Putin is chained to the helm
On 15 November a constitutive assembly of an All-Russian public movement “For Putin” will be held. The “Kommersant” business daily writes that the “United Russian” won’t participate in the first meeting, but among confabulators there will be a famous Moscow lawyer Pavel Astakhov. He is the only public figure of the federal level who has participated in regional meetings in support of Putin. It is expected that members of the “United Russia” party will participate only in Moscow forum of the movement, which is to become the key event of the pre-election campaign of the party. Although members of the party even don’t dissemble that the movement is designed to unite people who like Putin but don’t like the “United Russia”.
Thus, the movement is to become the main component of the electioneering of the “United Russia”, since they must live up to a confidence which Putin has given to them having agreed to head the ticket of the party sole. Now they must receive at least 71% which Putin got in 2004.
According to some reports governors have been already given a difficult task. They must provide to the United Russia with sufficient votes so as it won’t be lower than Putin’s result in 2004 or it will better exceed it by 2-3%.
The leader of the United Russia Boris Gryzlov told about one more method of election mobilization of the population. According to him the party set a task to members of it. Each one must bring over at least 10 followers of the party. “In such a way we’ll get an opportunity to check each member of the party”, stated he. Announcements about the pre-election project of the “ruling party” appeared in press already in the end of August; and the CEC explained that there was no law violation in it. At the moment the party numbers 1 million 290 thousand members. Providing the efficient use of net marketing, over 10 million followers of the party will come to election stations in December.
It is also possible that just the movement “For Putin” will settle on behalf of all Russian people propositions on a new configuration of the government with a national leader Vladimir Putin at the head of it after the parliament and the president are elected (still and all the rating of a new president will be lower than that of Putin).
It is remarkable the movement “For Putin” was created just after idea-monger of the “ruling party” had suggested to gather the All-Russian social and political forum and to found with the help of it a new political institute, an institute of the national leader. According to them this will help citizens who cannot decide between their own political parties and movements and actual approval of Putin’s policy. Both politicians and common citizens will get an opportunity to express their approval for the president’s policy by signing the Civil Unity Threaty. This document will be devoted first of all to “forming of an institute of the national leader being the main component of a “new configuration of the power” and the fundamental condition of the realization of Putin’s plan.” The name of Putin in the context doesn’t mean that only he can become “the national leader”. The matter concerns a person who will manage to blend with strict limits of the so-called Putin’s plan (it must be said, that the details of the plan are very little known), continue his policy and replace him after all.
A political scientist Mikhail Vinogradov told to polit.ru that the initiative of the Threaty is a result of internal discussions in the party, since its members are seriously anxious who will head the Russian policy after March 2008. They argue, first of all, about what model should be chosen, a model of figures or a model of institutes. It is still unclear, whether the plan of Putin is directed toward a certain person or this is a medium standard meant for the institute of the national leader. “It is obvious, that the model in which the main stabilizing functions belong to institutes, is more steady, but this model is unintelligible for the most of political elite”, noted the expert. “We are to expect that many different initiatives and statement will appear in the nearest future, some of them can be quite marginal”.
Meanwhile, it seems that the idee fixe of the third term is now replaced by the idea of the national leader. On Thursday representatives of Moscow public organizations gathered in the October hall of the House of the Unions and asked Putin to rule the country after the end of his presidential term. They asked him to remain “the national leader of the country” and have an active influence on the internal and foreign policy. The initiators of the assembly are Artur Savelov, head of the Moscow students centre (founded by Committees of the Moscow government and different colleges and institutes of the capital), the president of the charitable fond “Order of Mercy and Social Protection” Eugenia Poplavskaya and representatives of many other public organizations.
Poplavskaya stated that common people did not care how namely the problem of the third term would ve solved. “An important point for us is that Putin will still to be at the helm”.