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MOSCOW, September 21 (Itar-Tass) — Ex-governor of St. Petersburg Valentina Matviyenko has been elected Speaker of the Federation Council. Voting for the candidate for the post of the Speaker was held at the first autumn session of the Federation Council on Wednesday.
Matviyenko received 140 votes in her support with one abstention; the necessary number of votes to pass a candidate is 84. The Russian senators expressed unanimous support to Matviyenko who was nominated to this post on the initiative of President Dmitry Medvedev.
In June Medvedev approved a proposal made by a number of regional governors to nominate the then head of the St. Petersburg administration to the post of the Upper House Speaker. The post of the Speaker was vacated after the Legislative Assembly of St. Petersburg had recalled its representative Sergei Mironov, who was Speaker of the Federation Council.
To become a senator of the Upper House Valentina Matviyenko, who had been St. Petersburg governor since 2003, took part in municipal election in St.Petersburg in the end of August 2011. Matviyenko was put on the ballot in two constituencies of St. Petersburg and won a sweeping victory in both. On August 22 Matviyenko surrendered her powers as the St. Petersburg governor.
Matviyenko's successor to the post of the St.Petersburg governor Georgy Poltavchenko as soon as he came into office signed a resolution delegating Matviyenko to the Federation Council as a representative from the St. Petersburg government. On September 9 Valentina Matviyenko became a senator of the Federation Council.
Before joining the St. Petersburg municipal election Matviyenko met senators of the Council of the Upper House in July to win their support in her bid to become Speaker.