The Moscow duma election has finished with a literally “Asian” result: the “mayor's list” has fully passed. Even candidates from the list who were not known before gathered about 30 percent of voices, while not one candidate from Moscow Committee of Communist Party of the Russian Federation (kPRF) was elected to the Duma.
It should be noted that communists gathered on average of 15-20 percent of the votes, while the Election Commission predicted that they would only receive nine percent. The KPRF list of candidates made only one third of the whole number of Moscow Duma mandates. “Independent” candidates were eliminated already before voting. Therefore, the “illegal charity” of candidate Moskovchenko resulted in his removal as a candidate, while the Union of Right Forces’ candidate, Novitski, was elected to the Moscow Duma, in whose name food sets were handed over to Moscow citizens.
Actually, the main opponent of Moscow bureaucracy was the electorate. Everybody expected that the presence of the voters would not be high, but it was even two times less than in 1997. According to the TV channel Center, at 17.38, 19 percent of Moscovites took part in the election. In reality, no movements were observed in the voting district I could see from my window. So, I cannot believe that at that moment, my people next door came in flocks to vote in another voting district. When at 17.47, the voters’ presence made 22.99 percent and in two hours it increased by six percent, I understood that the presence of voters in Moscow would be guaranteed anyway.
As the first results became known, it was clear the Moscow bureaucracy block’s victory was beyond any doubt. However, there were some unexpected things. For example, in one district a KPRF candidate Karpukhina was leading, and then an independent candidate took the first place in the rating. As a result, the “coordinated” candidate, Moskvin-Tarkhanov, suddenly won a victory.
In general, seven KPRF candidates took second places; therefore, they could have had an influential faction in Moscow Duma if the voting had been carried out according to party lists. Communists who called their supporters to come out and vote practically guaranteed the victory of “united block of Moscow and the Kremlin’s bureaucracy.” Because it was clear beforehand, communists had no chance to win; however, their popularity is still increasing. Therefore, the communists deserve a very low grade for tactics.
Of course, an element of the collusion with ruling bureaucracy cannot be excluded, which pushed the party to take part in an election with “guaranteed” results. If so, on what level did this collusion take place?
What is without doubt is that in the next four years, the city party organization is doomed to an extra-parliamentary existence.
Anatoli Baranov PRVDA.Ru
Translated by Vera Solovieva
Read the original in Russian: http://www.pravda.ru/main/2001/12/17/34854.html