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MOSCOW, April 24 (Itar-Tass) —— United Russia will not insist on Dmitry Medvedev’s accession to the party, United Russia faction leader Andrei Vorobyov said on Tuesday.
“The party membership of each person – from the party chairman to a rank-and-file member –is a personal choice,” he said.
Vorovyov admitted that the party grew excessively in the beginning but it changed as time passed. “We live in a competitive environment, a democratic society,” he said, noting that the party needed to broaden cooperation and to win over strong personalities.
If this cooperation results in the party membership of such people, “we would naturally welcome that. But there will be no compulsion,” he said.
Prime Minister, President Elect Vladimir Putin told the party leaders on Tuesday that he would resign as the United Russia Chairman after his inauguration on May 7. He took that position in spring 2008 without becoming a party member. Putin also proposed to hold a party congress in the second half of May to approve the new party chairman. He nominated Medvedev for the position.