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The last Russian presidential candidates became known

December 15, 2011, 12:12 UTC+3

Now they should collect two million signatures before January 19

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MOSCOW, December 15 (Itar-Tass) On the last day for the reception of the nomination documents Governor of the Irkutsk Region Dmitry Mezentsev and retired Colonel-General Leonid Ivashov became the self-nominees in the presidential election campaign in 2012. Now they should collect two million signatures before January 19. The experts take Mezentsev as a technical candidate and believe that he could not refuse from the self-nomination.

The staff of the Eastern Siberian Railway nominated Mezentsev’s candidacy, the Nezavisimaya Gazeta writes. The fact that the governor gained support from RZD President Vladimir Yakunin, an official close to Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, shows that this step is an event thought out by the authorities. Chief of the Institute of Globalization Problems Mikhail Delyagin does not doubt about this. He is convinced that the Irkutsk governor has made his own decision to run in the presidential campaign in 2012, “Mezentsev is Gryzlov’s copy, hard-working and decent in the same way. He does only what he is instructed to do.” The similar factor is behind Leonid-Ivashov’s self-nomination. He heads the Military Great Power Union.

A member of the Right Cause Political Council Boris Nadezhdin is convinced that Mezentsev self-nominated to compete with CPRF leader Gennady Zyuganov, “The results of the election campaign in the State Duma showed that the Communists gained a twice higher percentage of votes than in 2007, and the same results may be achieved at the presidential elections.” If this is so, Mezentsev’s candidacy can turn out to be not technical and decorative at all.

It can be assumed that the similar factor is behind Leonid Ivashov’s self-nomination, the newspaper notes. The general noted that he agreed with the initiative of more than 40 public organizations, which offered to him to self-nominate at forthcoming presidential elections.

The Kommersant cited chief of the regional programs of the Foundation for Development of Information Policy Alexander Kynev as saying that Dmitry Mezentsev will play “a purely technical role” at the presidential elections – to ensure the formal competition among the candidates.”In the future this can be used for the transfer of Mezentsev from the post of the governor to another job,” he did not rule out. “Realizing political instability in the country, Putin, with whom Mezentsev’s self-nomination was certainly coordinated, decided to take a guarantee for himself in this way just if other candidates decide to quit the election race,” Irkutsk political scientist Yuri Pronin notes. It was difficult for Dmitry Mezentsev to refuse from this role, because he “is to blame to the Kremlin for a low rating of the United Russia Party at the State Duma elections.”

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