chapter  2
16 Pages

The Next General Elections in Russia: What Role for the Media?

THE NEXT DUMA AND PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS IN RUSSIA, to take place in 2007

and 2008, have prompted intense speculation almost from the moment the last

elections ended. The reason is not hard to explain, as Putin’s legitimate term in office is

coming to an end, and historically, the succession has almost always aroused

instability and an atmosphere of crisis. The democratic institution of elections has not

changed that aspect of things in Russia’s dysfunctional political system. The main

focus of interest is the March 2008 presidential election and the question of who will

run in the race: will Putin stand for a third term, in which case the constitution will

need to be revised, or will power pass to a successor?