MOSCOW, February 1. /TASS/. Out of 70 hopefuls who made their plans known to toss their hat into the ring for the Russian presidency during the run-up to the race, only 36 individuals were nominated and eventually the list narrowed down to eight candidates at the registration stage, Ella Pamfilova, the chairperson of the Central Election Commission [CEC] told reporters on Thursday.
She said 46 potential self-nominees and 24 party nominees announced their plans to run for the presidency initially.
"In reality, a total of 22 parties held events to nominate their candidates and 15 groups of voters in support of independent candidates convened meetings," Pamfilova stated. "Thirty-six candidates submitted documents to the CEC for their nomination."
She recalled that 16 candidates qualified for collecting voter signatures in their support upon the end of nomination and the CEC registered two candidates immediately, since parliamentary parties nominated them. Those are the leader of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia [LDPR], Vladimir Zhirinovsky, and the candidate from the Communist Party of the Russian Federation [CPRF], Pavel Grudinin.
The six candidates who submitted the required documents and voter signatures to the CEC for registration are incumbent President Vladimir Putin, who is taking part in the race as a self-nominee. Yabloko liberal party candidate Grigory Yavlinsky, the presidential business ombudsman and leader of the Party of Growth, Boris Titov, and TV celebrity Ksenia Sobchak who was nominated by the Civic Initiative party, will challenge the current president along with the leader of the Communists of Russia party [not to be confused with the CPRF], Maksim Suraikin, and head of the Russian All People’s Union, Sergei Baburin.