It may have won by a huge margin, but the results of Sunday’s Duma election in Russia are still disappointing for Vladimir Putin’s United Russia. The party won just under half of the vote, a massive decline compared to the 2007 election. The outcome reveals growing discontment with Putin—who wants to return to the position of Russian president—among the Russian population.
What’s the Big Idea?
It’s true voter turnout was, for various reasons, low but nevertheless the message of the Russian people is clear: They no longer want Putin and his president, Dmitry Medvedev, to control the country’s destiny with as much power as they have enjoyed until now. There is now speculation that Putin will jettison Medvedev, to shake off the taint of the bad result.