Kremlin Sees No Point In Early Elections To Lower House

A source in the presidential administration reports that the creation of a centrist coalition based on the Unity and Fatherland All-Russia factions has rendered senseless early elections to the lower parliamentary house. According to the source, Fatherland could hardly have overcome the 5%-margin in the event of early elections, with its voters backing equally Unity and the leftists. Today, Unity and Fatherland are acting hand in hand, stressed the source. In April, the respective Unity and Fatherland leaders, Sergei Shoigu and Yuri Luzhkov, announced the forthcoming November unification of the two organisations into a powerful centrist party. Simultaneously, four centrist unions of the State Duma--Unity, Fatherland, People's Deputy, and Russia's Regions--set up a coordinating council to work out a common approach to law-making. The source also says that at present, efforts are being made to draft a new scheme for forming legislative assemblies in Federation member states. This move aims at granting 50% of seats to single-constituency deputies, with the other half to be held by members who enter parliament on party tickets, explained the source.

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