Our democracy is not perfect but we continue to move forward – Medvedev
”It is no secret that for some time now signs of stagnation have begun to appear in our political life,” he said. “Such stagnation is equally damaging for both the ruling party and opposition forces.”
Dmitry Medvedev went on to say that if the opposition has no chance to win elections, it degrades as does the ever-winning ruling party.
”If the opposition has no chance at all of winning a fair fight then it degrades and becomes marginal,” he said. ”Our main task, the task of any democracy, is to improve the quality of popular representation, make sure that the political majority is not just static, or rather that it does not become a majority consisting of actors and dummies.”
Medvedev stressed that democracy should ensure the rights of minorities.
”Whatever its specifics, a political system must be designed so that the views of all, including the very smallest social groups, can be heard and taken into account,” he said. “Ideally, the voice of every single person should be heard. In this regard the system must be transparent, responsive to everybody.”
According to political analyst Evgeny Minchenko, the main reason for Dmitry Medvedev’s address is his intention to run for presidency in 2012.
”I guess that this conversation about democracy means concrete things,” he said. “I guess there could be some changes in the ruling party United Russia, maybe a change of leaders. I guess it could be a very interesting combination with oppositional parties.”
He added, “I remind you that Vladislav Surkov, the deputy head of the presidential administration said in the United States that maybe in the next parliament there will be five parties, not four like now.”
Dmitry Polikanov, from the Central Executive Committee of Russia's ruling United Russia party, did not see Medvedev’s remark as criticism.
“I think the United Russia party is actually working, you know, that’s why it dominates the political arena… This domination is not something which comes from above, this is the result of our everyday work during the election campaigns and between the election campaigns,” he said.