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On Friday, the State Duma will discuss the first reading of the bill to introduce one annual common Election Day. Regional and municipal elections will be sooner held on the second Sunday of September. United Russia, which promotes this idea, has recently gained the support of Medvedev at a meeting with the latter. Meanwhile, the opposition, both parliamentary and off-system opposition, criticizes sharply this initiative.
The Moskovsky Komsomolets daily recalled that now Russia holds two common election days on the second Sunday of October and on the second Sunday of March. The introduction of one common Election Day should cut the expenditures from the federal budget for preparations and holding of the elections.
The harvesting campaign in September is in full swing, secretary of the Central Committee of the Russian Communist Party and a State Duma deputy Vadim Solovyev told the Kommersant. “People, who returned from the vacations, still live at their countryside houses,” he said. Meanwhile, the election canvassing will fall on August in the media, “when most people go on vacations, and those who returned do not care at all about the election debates.” “Only the party, which has the administrative resource and finances,” can hold the elections efficiently simultaneously in 20-30 regions, the Communist believes. Therefore, “the ruling party decided to realize quickly the presidential initiative.”
“This will be the day of chaos, as the country has 83 federal constituents and 22,000 municipal entities,” co-chairman of the unregistered party PARNAS Vladimir Ryzhkov told the newspaper. According to him, the voter “will have to fill in about ten ballot papers, after that he will not be able to make the conscious choice,” and “the chaos will bring about more protests and resistance.” Meanwhile, Ryzhkov believes that “the deputies violate the Constitution, under which regional and local authorities can decide independently how and who they will elect.”
“In this case the election campaign is limited to one summer month, and we will not have the full-fledged race,” the Nezavisimaya Gazeta daily quoted head of the legal service of the Communist Party Vadim Solovyev as saying. Meanwhile, the lawmaker noted that a large number of elections, regional, local and federal elections, will be held on one day, “The opposition should consolidate major resources to participate in each election and engage a lot of candidates...” The elections set on the second Sunday of September Solovyev called as “the death to elections,” “You can imagine how the electorate is ‘interested’ in the voting in August during massive vacations.”