The sixth convocation of the state Duma coming to the finish line

The sixth convocation of the state Duma coming to the finish line


MOSCOW, December 23. The state Duma on Wednesday will complete the autumn session, and with it – and the last election year. The spring session, which will begin after the Christmas holidays, will be for many deputies last on Okhotny Ryad, where after the Federal election in September will have new elected officials.

From December to September

Fingering a landmark for the parliamentary corps of the past year, observers almost unanimously among the first called an unprecedented step made by the state Duma this year, the reduction of their own authority for the next elections in December and in September.

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The law on postponement of elections, adopted at the last plenary meeting of the previous spring session, has become a sort of a compromise reached with three of the four factions of the chamber. Not coincidentally, under his text was signed by speaker Sergei Naryshkin and the leaders of three parliamentary associations – Vladimir Vasilyev (United Russia), Sergey Mironov (a just Russia) and Vladimir Zhirinovsky (LDPR).

The absence of the signers of the head of the CPRF Gennady Zyuganov, perceived by many as a demarche, a priori, could not affect the fate of the initiative, and in the presence of the parliamentary majority, supported by two other factions, became more as a means of political expression, rather than attempting a major impact on the final result.

Meanwhile, the transfer of the Federal parliamentary elections in three months was not only politically symbolic act, but also raised a number of fundamental legal, legal, technical, financial aspects.

The adoption of such norms (the legitimacy of which in the case of a single use was confirmed by the Constitutional court of the Russian Federation) was another structural member of the Russian legislative-representative system. Earlier legislation, for example, envisaged the possibility of prolongation or reduction only of the powers of the regional legislatures to combine them with elections in the Duma.

In addition, the implementation of the law will be associated with some technological moments, such as the compensation nepareiziem deputies unprocessed for three months. However, the leaders of United Russia and the liberal democratic party has made it clear that their representatives will be advised of such payments to refuse.

The main aim of postponing the elections, the initiators, including Sergei Naryshkin, has called the budget optimization process. “There are many arguments in favour of the new budget was adopted by the deputies, who will in their part be responsible for its implementation and methods of parliamentary control to monitor the budget execution by the government,” he explained, speaking about the shift timing of the elections. At the same time, obviously, offset the timing of the campaign will not leave the newly formed parliamentary body time to adapt and will quickly oblige, to engage in the budget process.

Parliamentary consensus

Established in 2014 the so-called Crimean consensus – the unity of approaches and evaluations of the main political forces of the actions of the Russian leadership, especially on foreign policy – continued in the current year.

“We have there exists a consensus among all major political forces around the policies of President Vladimir Putin, especially around policy in the international arena,” – says research Director of the Fund “Institute of socio-economic and political studies” (ISAPI) Alexander Pozhalov. He notes that, even if a number of internal issues, “there is criticism of the government,” all political forces “agree that the may decrees, the strategy of socio-economic development set by the President, supported by most political forces.”

This same trend is also suggested by the Chairman of the state Duma. “The state Duma this year is that (it) once again showed that represented different political forces in the state Duma still know how to work together, find common positions, which are expressed in the current laws,” said Naryshkin in an interview with NTV on 13 December.

Such an approach, in his opinion, affects the rating of the lower chamber. “Last year we see that the confidence rating of 6-th convocation of the state Duma – the highest in the history of contemporary Russian Parliament, since 1993,” he claimed.

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MPs unanimously supported the air operation of Russia in Syria against the terrorist group “Islamic state” (IG, is prohibited in Russia), showed their solidarity in the evaluation of a series of terrorist attacks, which victimized many, including the Russians – passengers A321 aircraft exploded in the sky over the Sinai Peninsula, and the pilots of airline “Volga-Dnepr”, who was shot in the hotel in Mali. After these tragedies of Russia “was in fact a leader in the global fight against terrorism and have shown extremely high combat effectiveness of the army”, said the Vice-speaker Andrey Isaev (“United Russia”), stressing that all the talk about international isolation of Russia in the past.

Another event that have marked the socio-political consensus, was the celebration of the 70th anniversary of Victory in the great Patriotic war. “Most importantly – a stunning Immortal regiment”, – stated the leader of “Fair Russia” Sergey Mironov. “(We) have not yet realized the magnitude and power of what happened throughout the country when out with portraits of family and friends of participants in the great Patriotic war,” he said.

“70th anniversary of the great Victory … we celebrated not only as a poignant memorable date, but also as a day of opposition to neo-Nazism, which has not just begun to raise his head, but also openly come to power, as happened in Ukraine”, – said, in turn, the first Vice-speaker of the state Duma, first Deputy Chairman of the CPRF Central Committee Ivan Melnikov.

In the past year fairly common phenomenon is the appearance of bills initiated by the representatives of all factions of the chamber, and both their leadership and rank and file deputies. The products of this “collective intelligence” of steel, for example, laws prohibiting the election of heads of subjects of the Russian Federation for two consecutive terms, spending on PR governors, stricter financial discipline for deputies and officials of all levels. Representatives of all factions put their signatures under the draft law on the removal of Internet links to false information.

A special place in the collective lawmaking of deputies is a bill authorizing the Constitutional court of the Russian Federation to recognize the enforceability of decisions of international courts, especially the European court of human rights.

It has become also a kind of expression of consent on fundamental issues of development in the context of its positioning in the international arena. As explained by one of the authors of the document, the head of the Duma Committee on constitutional legislation and state building United Russia party, Vladimir Pligin, Russia’s position remains unchanged in strict compliance with its international obligations and treaties. “But we demand respect and the Constitution of the Russian Federation… In cases when the decisions of international courts affect the fundamentals of the constitutional system, we will not execute such decisions,” he indicated.

In the same vein, evaluate the state Duma and the achievement of parliamentary diplomacy. “It was not routine diplomacy through the inter-parliamentary ties. Policymakers around the world were coming to see us for essential discussions and the Chairman of the state Duma so actively used any external site to reflect our vision of events”, – said Ivan Melnikov. According to him, “so useful and meaningful in the implementation of foreign policy, the state Duma has never participated”.

With all this, the Communist party believes the outgoing year deadline from the point of view of substantial saturation of the controversy. Melnikov attributes this to the fact that “vnutricostna discussion came out of the shadows and extremely tense”.

Saving economical

And the main point on which the factions could not reach an understanding, has become the Federal budget, which – in view of the prevailing socio-economic conditions once again became an annual.

Adopted by the votes of some of United Russia, he was called the opposition “a budget of survival”. “You say, “a Budget of survival”. For some it’s “budget of hope”. All there is – and hope, and survival, and development,” retorted the opponents of the leader of the faction “United Russia” Vladimir Vasiliev.

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For its part, Isayev, supervising in the Duma social policy, considers very important in this sector the adoption of the law on assistance in need. “This is only the first step, we ensured that the assistance was not based on the category to which the individual belongs, and he really needs this social assistance or not,” he recalled.

Disagree with overall budgetary policy of the government, the opposition tried to win the “local battle”.

So, Deputy head of the LDPR faction Yaroslav Nilov believes the merit of the Duma, the liberal Democrats increased funding for the construction of roads, hospitals and kindergartens in different regions. “This is a significant achievement, when the amendments of the opposition party were accepted and heard,” he said.

“Legislative work in the past year was mainly under the auspices of the economic problems that have befallen our country due to the sanctions, the exchange rate and oil prices”, – said, in turn, Vice-speaker from the LDPR Igor Lebedev. Among the laws with the sign “plus”, adopted by the state Duma, member allocated a three-year moratorium on inspections of small businesses, the initiatives of the Amnesty of capital, and the laws concerning maternity capital, involving its extension and the possibility of cashing out of a particular part.

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What will change in CTP

With the sign “minus” for the liberal democratic party, according to him, were the laws about the possibility of depriving the debtors of a driver’s license for failure to pay fines in excess of 10 thousand rubles. Lebedev also called “totally unnecessary measure” improving the rates of CTP and criticized the introduction of road pricing of heavy trucks. “Maybe the rule on the Board with trucks over 12 tonnes and correct, but how it was made and put into effect, causes only a negative reaction,” – said Vice-speaker.

“We have extended the free privatization introduced discounts on major repairs for seniors. This can add to the piggy Bank”, – said Sergei Mironov, assessing the achievements of the past year. But in General, in the legislative plan, according to the leader “Fair Russia”, “something to boast of – not even remember”.

It is much harder, traditionally, Express their opinions on socio-economic policy representatives of the Communist party. “Consideration of amendments to the Federal budget in 2016 has become the procedure of rejection of all amendments of the Communist party, and one of the year’s results was the strengthening of the rate for total commercialization that has started generating incredible injustice everywhere and in everything,” says Melnikov. According to him, “jokes that will soon have to pay for breathing “state of the air” or “beat the asphalt” on the way to work – appeared in the people themselves and no longer seem funny”.

However, the “belt-tightening” and had by the deputies. In February 2015 it was decided to reduce the salaries of MPs by 10% (along with a number of individuals in senior management positions in Russia), it will be prolonged for the next year.

An unexpected turn took for deputies discussion about increasing the period of retirement. Voiced in the state Duma to postpone the initiative for government officials and parliamentarians getting superannuation back on Okhotny Ryad, the draft law of the Ministry of labor, slugging obtaining a number of categories of citizens, including MPs, insurance and pensions. Many members of Parliament were infuriated and, though adopted in the first reading, are threatening to appeal to the constitutional court if it will not undergo significant changes by the second.

The fact that raising the retirement age will only be held for civil servants, Isaev called “very serious societal compromise” and noticed that in this way the state makes this step only in respect of itself. “In relation to the mass of people in the medium term, the retirement age will not be raised. This is the result of this extremely important debate. Financial-economic bloc of the government it looks like a loser,” the politician stated.

The test election

It is obvious that, even in the case of adoption of rules on parliamentary pensions, in the original version, to experience their consequences have not all current parliamentarians.

Under forecasts of observers, after the elections in September 2016 the composition of the Deputy corps can be quite significantly updated, taking into account the fact that half of it will be formed after the elections in single-member districts, where the chances to prove himself at bright local politicians.

Evaluating summer, before the single day of voting, the prospects of the current deputies to break into the next state Duma via single-mandate district, ISAPI noted that these odds are great for 148 people’s deputies. Given the fact that around 40-45% of single-member districts were “free from the extensions of the current state Duma deputies in the rank of favorites”, political analysts assumed that in the state Duma of the new convocation may receive about 100 “new mandate”.

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After the elections ISAPI assessed the prospects of the politicians who participated in the fall campaign, including deputies of the state Duma. According to the findings of the study, which in total was estimated 50 people, some of them the election went into the “minus” that makes you wonder about the prospects for the Federal campaign.

Last December, the rating of ISAPI was designed to identify shapes that will have a significant impact on the field of public policy during elections to the state Duma in 2016. In the category of “Federal policy”, which includes MPs, senators, key figures in the parties, “sets the tone in the field of Federal public policy and the process of preparation of parties for elections”, added a number of new ranking persons, including at the expense of some deputies, who came on “the public role” just after the September elections.

What will be the next New year for Russia will depend in many respects from those who come on Okhotny Ryad in September, as well as what legacy will they leave the current parliamentary body.