icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm

Medvedev submits bill to ease restrictions on forming new parties

Medvedev submits bill to ease restrictions on forming new parties
President Dmitry Medvedev has submitted to parliament a draft law aimed at liberalizing Russia’s political system. The bill lifts some restrictions on party activities and simplifies the process of registering new parties.

First, the draft law frees all parties from the onerous business of collecting voters’ signatures as a prerequisite for standing in all elections except the presidential poll. Currently, only parliamentary parties are exempt from this obligation.

Presidential candidates who belong to parties not represented in the Duma will still have to collect signatures. However, under the new bill, the number required is down from a hefty 2 million to just 100,000. Independent presidential hopefuls will in future only have to collect 300,000 signatures to support their candidacy, significantly down from the 2 million currently required.  

The bill also cuts the number of signatures required for independent candidates wishing to run in local elections. Under the proposed legislation, it will not exceed 0.5 per cent of the number of voters in the relevant election constituency, against 2 per cent presently.

The creation of new parties will also be significantly eased. The draft law only requires a minimum of 500 members to be registered. That’s a big drop from the 45,000-member threshold currently in force.

The president’s move comes a day after his address to the Federal Assembly in which he highlighted the continued modernization and liberalization of the political system as a major factor in the country’s development.

Dear readers and commenters,

We have implemented a new engine for our comment section. We hope the transition goes smoothly for all of you. Unfortunately, the comments made before the change have been lost due to a technical problem. We are working on restoring them, and hoping to see you fill up the comment section with new ones. You should still be able to log in to comment using your social-media profiles, but if you signed up under an RT profile before, you are invited to create a new profile with the new commenting system.

Sorry for the inconvenience, and looking forward to your future comments,

RT Team.