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Thursday
Feb022012

What Would A Second Round Of Elections Look Like?

It appears that Putin's ratings have risen sharply within a week...

That is if you take your information uncritically from Kara-Murza:

All three of Russia’s national polling agencies—the government-owned VTsIOM, the government-friendly FOM, and the independent Levada Center—suggest that Putin will fall below the 50-percent-plus-one threshold required for a first round victory: they predict, respectively, that he would win 49 percent,  44 percent, and 43 percent of votes cast. And with a possibility of a unified anti-Putin protest vote, the outcome of the runoff is far from certain.

A week ago, Kara-Murza claimed that Putin only has 36% support. What he again fails to mention at this instance, is that all of the polls he is citing above, are percentages from among all of the people inquired, which includes around 20% of those that either will not take part in the elections, or happen to be undecided. Likewise, notice that Kara-Murza does not link to the original websites of the poling agencies, but to reports in the liberal-friendly Kommersant, where a tendentious spin is to be expected. Putin's actual rating, as it stands, is around 60% (Levada puts it at 63%), and therefore, the liberal fantasy of there being a second round of elections is not likely to materialise.

Anatoly Karlin wrote this on the presidential elections, in his predictions for 2012:

There is little doubt that Putin will comfortably win the Presidential elections in the first round. The last December VCIOM poll implies he will get about 60%. So assuming there is no major movement in political tectonics in the last three months – and there’s no evidence for thinking that may be the case, as there are tentative signs that Putin’s popularity has began to recover in the last few weeks from its post-elections nadir. Due to the energized political situation, turnout will probably be higher than than in the 2008 elections – which will benefit Putin because of his greater support among passive voters. I do think efforts will be made to crack down on fraud so as to avoid a PR and legitimacy crisis, so that its extent will fall from perhaps 5%-7% in the 2011 Duma elections to maybe 2%-3% (fraud in places like the ethnic republics are more endemic than in, say, Moscow, and will be difficult to expunge); this will counterbalance the advantage Putin will get from a higher turnout. So that’s my prediction for March:Putin wins in the first round with 60%, followed by perennially second-place Zyuganov at 15%-20%, Zhirinovsky with 10%, and Sergey Mironov, Mikhail Prokhorov and Grigory Yavlinsky with a combined 10% or so. If Prokhorov and Yavlinsky aren’t registered to participate, then Putin’s first round victory will probably be more like 65%. 

I personally do not think that taking out Yavlinskiy is of any benefit to Putin, but otherwise I agree with the basic thesis above. There will not be a second round of presidential elections! But what if there actually was? What if Putin really got those, say 45%? In that case, you can prepare for a contest between Putin and Zyuganov. Imagine that! Half of Bolotnaya will vote for Putin, and some hamsters from the internet will vote for Putin in secret. Welcome to a brave new world where liberal opinion does not matter! 

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Reader Comments (27)

This Kara-Murza fella really likes to get bitch slapped!

February 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAllanH

@ AllanH

I think he must realise that it looks rather bad when the figures in one of his post differ massively from figures in a next post that he does a week later. Kara-Murza is a smart man, but he is locked in his game. His task, as it is for other liberal agitators, is to delegitimise the government in Russia. He cannot do otherwise to remain relevant in Russian liberal circles, and with Westerners that have an interest in seeing the government in Russia go. He has to keep hyping this fantasy.

It's an unenviable position really. ;-)

February 3, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

What do you make of this?

Russian Orthodox Church responds to Berezovsky's address to Patriarch

http://www.interfax-religion.com/?act=news&div=8983

February 3, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjack

To be critical of the current Putin regime (18 years, trying to go on 40) is an 'unenviable position'...? Not, really, trying to 'hype' this soon to be dictatorship is unfortunately the really 'unenviable fantasy'....

February 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

@ Hack

I personally have nothing against Putin, so do most Russians, you cannot argue with the numbers. I do not see a dictatorship emerging or anything of the kind, do you? And why don't you address the article?

February 3, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

@ jack

From the article:

"Chaplin reiterated that taking secular power is "the last thing the Church is supposed to do" and all historical episodes where the Orthodox, Catholic, or any other church "became a secular power or part of it indicate that such a situation is bad."

"I don't quite understand what people Boris Abramovich [Berezovsky] wants the power to be given to. Where are representatives of these people? Whom does Mr Berezovsky consider to be legitimate? I would be interested in hearing his response to learn the names of the true friends of the people, who truly express his opinion," Father Vsevolod said."

Personally I think Father Vsevolod is asking a good question. Liberasts always trip over themselves answering the above.

February 3, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

Leos - you don't cover much new ground here. The fact that Karma-Murza used some inaccurate information is not new news...your place as a reporter has already been assured in the annals of investigative reseach. Why not do a new piece on the 'mythology' that is creeping up more and more in the press about how Putin has managed to amass one of the largest personal fortunes in the world, since he first took office? It's this type of misinformation that is causing the halo around Putin's head to tarnish, and his image as a corrupt authoritarian ruler to flourish?.......

February 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

@ Hack

So you find it ok that Kara-Murza deliberately uses false information and bases his entire spin on it? I frankly do not care about Putin's wealth, he has made the economic situation of many Russians better. And your argument is really silly when the people who oppose Putin the most are people who have amassed vast fortunes in the nineties while holding political power. Gaidar, Sobchak, Nemtsov, Kasyanov have not only become rich, they impoverished the rest.

And why do I even bother, Putin has high approval ratings, and electoral support, his opponents have none of it.

February 3, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

Leos - do you have a short memory...we already went over a number of times yesterday, how Kara-Murza used the information available at the time that he wrote his article. Even you were 'nice' enough to allow him this injustice...Remember??.....

If Putin is such a shoe in, then why do his undercover thugs keep on harassing his opponents, and insuring that they somehow screw something up so that they don't get on the ballot etc;...All that I see is one ex-KGB thug who's more polished at out-thuging his opponents....Seems to be the way 'democracy' has developed in the former Soviet Union.

February 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

@ Hack

So how do you explain his next piece which this article is about? I do not have to be nice to him this time. ;-)

So now you want to tell me that Putin's undercover thugs are guilty of screwing Yavlinskiy's application, or what? Putin's undercover thugs are guilty of opposition figures coming to the US embassy in droves too? Or are guilty of nationalists shouting down speakers? Are guilty of the dismal ratings of liberals?

Putin must be like a total genius, and an incredible superman to do all that!

And since you are at it, watch this:
http://youtu.be/whBlvL4nz4o

February 4, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

@Leoš Tomíček

I suspect Putin has money stored in offshore accounts to finance a new breed of Kremlin friendly Oligarchs if he is disposed off or a colour revolution is successful and capital to influence (bribe?) countries away from US influence into agreeing to Russia oil pipeline deals to Europe.

Basically he is using the same tactic the Brits and there Oligarchs have used against Russia.

February 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjack

@ jack

Actually, the super-rich (I do not like to call them oligarchs, because they are no archons) that exist in Russia are subservient to the Kremlin, and Putin has been known for giving out fiefs to his loyalists, and taking fiefs from those that oppose him. And Putin saves them from trouble when they have some. Like paying off some of the debts certain individuals have incurred through engaging in international trade before the crash of 2008, from state reserves of course. And Putin certainly does not do all this for free.

None of the political leaders in Russia are particularly poor, even Mr. Redistribution Zyuganov lives large. I am however interested in people's personal fortunes. Putin's amassed wealth should be mentioned in the same sentence with the size of Russian currency reserves, Russian debt, Russian GDP, Russian manufacture, Russian exports, and other things. Our resident troll should bother about the political elite in his own ancestral land. That country is perpetually in crisis while a small elite drives Maybachs.

February 4, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

Have you ever seen me really get behind any of the Ukrainian elite??.....They're all crooks in Ukraine, as they are elsewhere in the former Soviet block. Putin just happens to be the biggest one of all, and this article is about Russia, not Ukraine. We've talked ad nauseum about things in Ukraine, and its refreshing to finally talk a bit about things in Russia. I suspect that we'll be talking a lot more about things in Russia in the near future too. Besides being a larger country than Ukraine, Russia has the added benefit of its energy reserves. Can you imagine Russia without this resource? Where would it get any cash reserves to keep it afloat, as it does now?? I mean its industrial base is stagnant, and so many of its youth are either trying to leave for the West, or scheming of ways to do so in the future. By the way Leos, what's keeping you from moving back home, and finding the right Natasha and creating kids for Russia's future survival?? God knows, Russia needs more citizens. ..Be a real patriot (Russophile of course) Leos, and really do something useful for your Rodina, not just blah, blah, blah....:-)

(Don't ask me the same, for I'm no fan of Yanukovich nor any of Ukraine's other politicians either, besides I'm older than you too!).....

February 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

What I mean to say to you Leos, as an older friend, is...there comes a time in every man's life when he has to put his bong and remote control down, and embrace the serious realities of life too, before it's too late...I mean look at Putin, he too had to distance himself from the German beerhalls, got married at some point, and started to create pioneers for Russia's shining future...he is after all, your Superstar role model, isn't he?? :-)

February 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

@ Hack

I am not a supporter of the 'Russia only runs on oil' theory', nor do I think that the young want to emigrate. Actually many who have previously left have returned. Many Westerners go and work in Russia, I personally know several people like that. So you can spare me your myths, and besides I'm not Russian.

February 4, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

2. A commodities-based economy. The Russian economy so far remains commodities-driven despite its growth. Payments from the fuel and energy sector in the form of customs duties and taxes reached 3.1 trillion rubles ($128 billion) last year, or nearly half of the federal budget's revenues.

Besides, a substantial share of companies in manufacturing and trade process oil and market oil products, and are therefore part of the fuel and energy sector. Raw materials and fertilizers make up the overwhelming majority of Russia's exports. Machinery and equipment account for only $17 billion of the $352 billion export revenues.* http://en.rian.ru/analysis/20080301/100381963.html

Other than pirated software, dvd's, cd's etc; I can't think of any other manufactured products that are considered first rate in the world economy??...Well, maybe matrioshkas?........

February 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

@ Hack

So now we are expanding the list to raw materials. :-)) Russia has plenty of them. :-)) You know, largest country in the world has a lot under its soil. :-))

February 5, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

'You know, largest country in the world has a lot under its soil. :-))'

A lot under the soil o continental Africa too!...I guess it's good for American companies like Caterpilar that build the necesary trucks and bulldozers necessary to extract of these 'raw materials', and that is currently reporting record profits.

February 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

@ Hack

Americans are oil importers, good for them that they have something they still make and export. They sell things to Russians too. ;-)

February 5, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

Leos - Other than pirated DVD's, CD's, software and silly sovok style propoganda lauding Putin on the internet, I can't think of anything else that America imports from Russia?...Even Stolichnaya is dwindling its market share to Nemiroff!! (well, maybe a couple of hockey players??...) :-)

February 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

@ Hack

America imports pirated DVDs, CDs, and software from Russia? I tell you what America imports, financing! Russia holds still US Treasury bonds, even though they have wised up to this and started to get rid of them. :-)) I am not even sure a lot of that machinery Russians buy from American companies is assembled in America, I know plenty of the things give jobs to Russian hands. :-))

February 5, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

@ Hack

And it is rather interesting that you hate Putin so much. Why is it always some Russophobe, and Western suck-up, who does not like Putin? I really wonder... :-))

February 5, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

'Why is it always some Russophobe, and Western suck-up, who does not like Putin? I really wonder... :-))'

He's an avowed Ukrainophobe, who doesn't even respect Ukraine's borders. What's there to like??.....

February 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

@ Hack

If Ukraine was anything worth mentioning, maybe Putin would respect it. :-))

February 6, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

'If Ukraine was anything worth mentioning, maybe Putin would respect it. :-))'

A typical Russian chauvenistic viewpoint. Your real sovok roots are getting harder and harder to cover up, Leos!

February 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

@ Hack

Sovok, or Russian chauvinist, it is hard to have svidomite goggles.

February 6, 2012 | Registered CommenterLeoš Tomíček

Leos - actually, no goggles are necessary, just a clear head, and a warm heart for your ethnic forefathers. By the way, you've recently indicated that you have no actual Russian roots in your geneology. And if I'm not mistaken you've indicated that you have one, perhaps two grandfathers that were actually Ukrainian. Which brings one to wonder why this bleeding heart Russodomite stance on your part? Even promoting some absolutely ridiculously sovok insinuations that the Ukrainian language was a 'Polish' or Austrian' invention??...Are you really some sort of a FSB agent, as some of your detractors on the web indicate???....:-)

February 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoscow Crowd Cheering Hack

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