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Russia: Political Institutions. Surabi Kondapaka Period 7. Current System. Legislature. Executive. Judiciary. Federation Council. President. Constitutional Court. Chairman of Gov’t (Premier). State Duma. Supreme Court. Supreme Court of Arbitration. Deputy Chairman.

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Russia political institutions

Russia: Political Institutions

Surabi Kondapaka

Period 7


Current system

Current System

Legislature

Executive

Judiciary

Federation Council

President

Constitutional Court

Chairman of Gov’t (Premier)

State Duma

Supreme Court

Supreme Court of Arbitration

Deputy Chairman

Prosecutor General

The Ministries


President

President

  • Head of State

  • Vladimir Vladmirovich Putin

  • 2 consecutive 6-year terms

  • Appoints Prime Minister and Cabinet

    • Must be approved by Duma

  • Leads “Power Ministries”

    • Military, police, KGB

  • Can introduce martial law

  • Can veto legislation

  • Can dissolve Dumaand call new elections

    • Yeltsin attempted to do so by force


Prime minister

Prime Minister

  • Chairman of Government

  • Dmitry Medvedev

  • Appointed by President

  • Runs “day-to-day” activities

  • Can be removed by a vote of no confidence by the Duma

  • Submits Annual Budget

  • Putin expanded PM powers in 2008


Judiciary

Judiciary

  • Judges appointed by President, approved by Federation Council

  • Have Judicial Review

  • Putin advocated law reform, but issues still exist:

    • Corruption

    • Questionable judicial independence


Judiciary1

Judiciary

  • Constitutional Court

    • High Court – addresses Constitutional Complaints

    • 19 members

  • Supreme Court

    • Highest appeals court

    • Final court in criminal and civil cases

    • 115 members

  • Supreme Court of Arbitration

    • Final court for commercial disputes

    • 53 members


Districts

Districts

  • 8 super districts

  • 89 “federal subjects”

    • 21 “Republics”

    • Each signed the Federation Treaty

      • Except Chechnya

  • Relative autonomy under Yeltsin, but Putin cracked down


Federalism

Federalism

  • Constitutionally “federal system” – but highly centralized

  • “Asymmetric Federalism”

    • Presidential Nomination of Governors (Approved by Legislature)

    • Presidential Removal of Governors

    • Creation of Super-districts

      • “Super-governors” appointed by President

    • Governors appoint Federation Council Members

    • Elimination of Single Member Districts

      • Duma has proportional representation


Legislature

Legislature

  • Bicameral Legislature

    • Federation Council – “Upper House”

    • Duma – “Lower House”

  • Known collectively as the Federation Assembly


Federation council

Federation Council

  • “Upper House”

  • Equal Representation: 2 members from 89 regions

    • One elected from the provincial legislature

    • One appointed by provincial governor (confirmed by legislature)

  • Powers:

    • Approve/reject laws (mostly delay legislation)

    • Confirm judges

    • Ratify treaties

    • Approve troop deployment


State duma

State Duma

United Russia (238)

CPRF (92)

A Just Russia (64)

LDPR (56)

  • “Lower House” – but more power

  • 450 reps - proportional representation from districts

  • Powers:

    • Pass bills

    • Approve Budget

    • Impeach President

    • Confirm PM appointments

    • Vote of Confidence to remove PM


Political parties

Political Parties

  • 1991 – small, factional groups formed

  • Most formed around specific leaders or issues

    • “Yuri-Boldyrev Movement”

    • Yabloko

    • Agrarian Party

    • Party of Pensioners

  • Weak, fluid party power/loyalty

    • Over 100 parties in 1993

    • Currently 70 registered parties


Political parties1

Political Parties

United RussiaA Just Russia

CPRFLDPR


Political parties2

Political Parties

  • United Russia

    • Largest party by far

      • Gains strength from smaller “Pro-Putin” parties

    • Merger of 2 parties: Fatherland All-Russia and Unity Party

    • Formed by Boris Berezovsky to support Putin in 2000 election

    • “Putinism”

      • Modernization, economic reform


Political parties3

Political Parties

  • The Communist Party of the Russian Federation (CPRF)

    • Doesn’t want to reestablish the old regime, but wants its stability

    • Led by Gennady Zyuganov

    • Stance:

      • Regain old Soviet territory

      • Central planning, nationalization, worker’s rights

      • Willing to preserve small enterprises

    • Appeals to rural population and older citizens

    • Recently declining popularity


Political parties4

Political Parties

  • A Just Russia

    • Sergei Mironov

    • Socialist version of CPRF

    • Welfare state, minimize rich-poor gap

  • Liberal Democratic Party

    • Vladimir Zhirinovsky

    • Extremely controversial party

      • Nationalistic, sexist, anti-Semitic

      • Promotes nuclear warfare and strict justice

      • Vows to restore old Soviet borders

      • Mixed economy, private ownership


Reformist parties

Reformist Parties

  • Yabloko

    • Acronym of 3 founders (Yavlinsky, Boldyrev, Lukin) – also means “apple”

    • Pro-democracy

    • Used to be popular among intellectuals, Gorbachev-era reformists

  • Union of Right Forces

    • “Right” as in “not wrong” (not ideological right)

    • Free Market and privatization of industry

  • Republican Party of Russia

    • Against the “Putin regime”


Voting

Voting

  • Referendum – called by President

  • Duma Elections – proportional representation

    • 2007 – Putin eliminated single-member districts

  • Presidential Elections

    • Direct election

    • Runoff if no candidates win a simple majority

    • Highly suspicious

      • 2000: Putin won by 52.94%

      • 2004: Putin won by 71%

      • 2008: Medvedev won by 71.2%

      • 2012: Putin won by 63.6%


Oligarchy

Oligarchy

  • Wealthy tycoons monopolized industries under Yeltsin

  • Boris Berezovsky and 6 others controlled >50% of Russia’s GNP through oil and media

  • Oligarchy survived Yeltsin’s demise - formed United Russia party around Putin

  • Once elected, Putin cracked down on oligarchs

    • Exiled Berezovsky, arrested CEO of Yukos Oil

      • Sent warning to other oligarchs

    • Oligarchs lost political power, Putin lost economic popularity


Russian mafia

Russian Mafia

  • Larger, perhaps more influential than oligarchy

  • Gained control during Revolution of 1991

    • Controlled local business, banks

    • Offered “protection money”

    • Laundered their own money

  • Affiliated with the KGB


State corporatism

State Corporatism

  • Insider privatization

  • State determines who has policy-making input

  • Large, state-owned holding companies

  • Government forces large/rich companies to sell

  • Gov’t controlled industries and Putin loyalists benefit


Russian media

Russian Media

  • Most media is government controlled

    • Channel 1: Public Russian TV

  • Some privately owned newspapers, TV stations

  • “Freedom of Speech” is questionable

    • Anna Politkovskaya criticized policies about Chechnya- was mysteriously poisoned

    • Ivan Safranov – outspoken critic - “fell from the window of his apartment”


Military

Military

  • Soviets prioritized military funding

  • Under Russian Fed, military humiliated

    • Unpaid soldiers

    • Withdrawal from Afghanistan (1988)

    • Loss to Chechan Guerrillas (1994-96)

  • Most political leaders have been civilian, military stays out of politics

  • Putin pushing to reassert military power

    • 2007 – announced Air Force would start regular, nuclear capable patrols


Overview

Overview

PRESIDENT

Presidential Administration

Constitutional Court

Supreme Court

Supreme Court of Arbitration

Federation Council

Prime Minister

Super-Governors

Government

State Duma

Regional Governors

Regional Legislatures

VOTERS


Questions

Questions?


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