Seven brave: how the Kremlin reduced the risks on elections of governors


The seventh region

This year in a single day of voting governors will elect not more than seven regions, said two people close to the presidential administration. Now direct elections are scheduled in six territories of Komi, Chechnya, TRANS-Baikal region, as well as Tula, Tver and Ulyanovsk regions. It can be added only one region, Tuva, said the source close to the Kremlin and the leadership of the ruling party. But here we are not talking about changing the head, most likely, the current head of the region asked the President about early elections.

The powers of the current head of Tuva sholbana Kara-oola expire only in 2017. But it would be wise to postpone the voting for this year, since it is a subsidized region, and to save money it is better to combine Governor’s elections with the elections of the state Duma (elections at all levels will be held on September 18), explains a Federal official.

A source close to the Kremlin, said that the reason rather in the personal desire Kara-ool and the environment of an influential native of the region, defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. They felt that this year it would be better to guarantee the preservation of the current head of the territory of another five fly, says the source .

Press Secretary Kara-ool said that become aware of possible early elections only from the media, and in the region of this is not known.

Another source close to the presidential administration, earlier it was told that the Kremlin is not against to move a campaign from 2017 to 2016. According to him, in the autumn of next year should focus on the preparations for the presidential election, scheduled for March 2018, and the less it will be necessary to think about elections of governors, the better. “From a political point of view, the current Governor of Tuva perfectly control the situation, hardly anyone is able to compete with him,” says the source .

Calm campaign

2016 is exempt from the difficult campaign, in almost all the regions of the elections are likely to take place without any problems for the authorities, predict two of the interlocutor close to the Kremlin. There will be elections in large and important regions, so that the presidential administration will not be distracted from the elections of the state Duma, the source continues .

Initially for 2016 have been scheduled elections of the heads of nine regions, including the difficult electoral situation, but on the recommendation close to the Kremlin Fund ISAPI many of these campaigns, conducted ahead of schedule. For example, the vote in St. Petersburg and the Vologda region occurred two years earlier — in 2014, and in Sakhalin (after the arrest of the Governor Alexander Horoshavin) and on the Kamchatka Peninsula in 2015. In Karachay-Cherkessia the direct election of the head were completely abolished and replaced by a vote in Parliament.

Instead of these territories in 2016, the year has appointed elections in Komi Republic (after the arrest of Vyacheslav Gaizer, acting head of the Republic was appointed Sergei Gaplikov) and Zabaykalsky Krai (after harsh criticism from the President the resignation of Konstantin Ilkovsky, it was replaced by Natalya Zhdanova). In both regions there are problems, but the new managers of almost no competition, says a source close to the Kremlin. “In Komi Republic were strong members of the elite, but they are either arrested following the Governor, either waiting for arrest,” he adds.

In the Tula region is also not expected much difficulty, it was headed by former Deputy defense Minister and former Deputy head of the presidential security service Alexei Dyumin. He has no experience in public policy, but it needs to impress voters with his background, says a source close to the Kremlin. Dyumin changed this year, Vladimir Gruzdev, who was having relationship problems with a part of the Federal elite. “Now the problems of inter-elite confrontation in the elections will not” — said the source .

According to him, of course, will not have any problems with the re-election of the head of Chechnya Ramzan Kadyrov, the only question is how much interest he gets.

Complicated territory

More complex than in other regions, it may be the campaign of the provisional head of the Tver region, Igor, With, says political analyst Yevgeny Minchenko. This is a depressed region, and acting Governor — not from the local elite (he was born and worked in Moscow, where he rose to the head of the Department of agriculture of the government), explains the expert.

From, With, in addition, there may be strong competitors, such as state Duma Deputy from the Communist party Vadim Solovyov, adds a source close to the leadership of “United Russia”. However, the interlocutor expects that Rodina will win. “The previous Governor Andrey Shevelev specifically changed to a more powerful business Executive, because the previous head of the region was simply too dangerous to go to the Duma elections — you could lose everything. Now the main issues of the inefficiency of the manual should be withdrawn”, — the interlocutor expects.

Complex may be the campaign of the Governor of the Ulyanovsk region Sergey Morozov, predict two of the interlocutor close to the Kremlin. The defeat, according to them, he did not threaten, but Morozov is a conflict with some Federal officials, which sought his resignation. This conflict, in particular, was evident last year, when the leadership of “United Russia” has accused the head of the region in the pressure on the local branch of the party, and Marina Bespalova dismissal from the post of mayor of Ulyanovsk.

“Part of Federal officials unhappy with the lack of control of Morozov and wanted him fired. But Morozov has managed to achieve an audience with the President and save the post. Now it is waiting for a difficult campaign, certainly for his actions will be closely monitored and will focus on the flaws,” predicts one source .

At least the election

A source close to the Kremlin, stressed that in addition to Tuva no additional gubernatorial elections this year will not, campaigns will be only seven.

The election was less than in 2012, when he was elected five governors. This year direct elections were held for the first time since their return. In 2013, the elected heads of eight regions. In the next two years of the campaign were massive: in 2014, elected the heads of the regions 30, 2015 – 21. Thus, the Kremlin implemented a strategy for the release of the Federal cycle 2016-2018 from the gubernatorial election.

But last year the authorities first encountered difficulties — the Governor of Irkutsk region Sergey Eroschenko after local intra-elite conflict lost to Communist Sergey Levchenko. To completely eliminate the repetition of Irkutsk “script” not this year, said political analyst Rostislav Turovsky. It also relates to most risky for the government elections in the Tver region. “But this year the governors will be simpler because gubernatorial elections coincide with the Federal Duma campaign “United Russia”. This campaign can give the heads of the regions competitive advantage. In addition, governors will try to negotiate with the strongest potential opponents, for example, promising to help them be elected to the Duma in exchange for non-participation in elections, sums up the expert.