The Shotgun Blog
Tuesday, March 04, 2008
Varner: Putin's Power Play
Dmitri Medvedev, the new president of Russia, might feel a little bit like the old president. That's because Vladimir Putin's hand-picked successor will likely toe Putin's line. The two have a long history, and, as Joseph B. Varner argues in "Putin's power play," that history will mean a de facto presidency for Putin, even if, de jure, Medvedev has the title.
"Putin himself would have remained president except that Russia's constitution prohibits him from holding that office for three consecutive terms. It doesn't stop him from being prime minister though. Putin will be running in December's parliamentary elections on the United Russia Party list and, given that party's virtual lock on the Duma (Russia's Parliament) and the fact that the prime minister is elected by the Duma, there is no doubt whatsoever that he will succeed. Having secured control of the majority Party, the Duma, the security and defense ministries, and even the president himself, Putin will have succeeded in making himself Russia's newest strongman." Read more...
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