Glass Half Empty

11 Sep 2017

(Moscow-on-Thames) In case you were wondering what a stolen election looks like, this is it.

Russians went to the polls yesterday for what will be the last major round of voting before the presidential election next spring. Both the Kremlin and the opposition, of course, had points to prove. And both sides, it would seem, achieved something closely resembling their goals. United Russia handily won 16 out of the 16 gubernatorial elections held Sunday, including in Ekaterinburg, where the main opposition candidate wasn’t allowed on the ballot. The opposition, meanwhile, fielded a united front in the municipal council elections in Moscow and fared better than anyone could have expected, grabbing majorities in 10 districts.

The story of the grassroots movement that allowed the opposition to pull off that result is quite something, but that’s not what’s on my mind at the moment. The real question is, why didn’t the opposition win more? [...]

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