Law of the Week: Putin says he has majority for amendments to the Constitution

Week-ending 12 June 2020

Putin Says ‘Majority’ Back Plan to Change Russian Constitution

President Vladimir Putin said Friday an “absolute majority” of Russians back his controversial plan to change the Constitution, as he made his first public appearance after weeks of lockdown. Russia, which has the world’s third-largest coronavirus caseload, this week lifted tight restrictions as Putin set the stage for a vote on July 1 that could extend his hold on power until 2036. Putin greeted his compatriots at an open-air flag-raising ceremony in western Moscow to mark the Russia Day public holiday.  He was surrounded by allies, including prominent paediatrician Leonid Roshal. 

Source: The Moscow Times, 12 June 2020

Presidential Human Rights Council to monitor voting on amendments to Constitution

MOSCOW, June 9 (RAPSI) – Russia’s Presidential Human Rights Council established an ad hoc working group to monitor the process of voting on the amendments to be introduced in the national Constitution, the body’s press service informs on Tuesday. At this stage, among the group’s participants are listed the Council executive secretary, the head of the body’s Commission on Electoral Rights Alexander Tochenov, Council members Andrey Babushkin, Maria Bolshakova, Igor Borisov, Alexander Brod, Eva Merkacheva, and Leonid Polyakov. RAPSI, 9 June 2020

Step right up, ladies and gentlemen! Russia’s authorities pull out all the stops to mobilize for a delayed plebiscite that could extend Putin’s presidency to 2036

Over the next few weeks, the Russian authorities will have their hands full. The nation is simultaneously withdrawing coronavirus quarantine restrictions and preparing to hold a plebiscite on July 1 to vote on constitutional amendments that could extend Vladimir Putin’s presidency to 2036. Judging by the scale of efforts by election officials, the Kremlin seeks a sweeping victory in the vote. Russians can expect all manner of enticements and inducements to participate: state employees are being compelled to mobilize their friends and family, skeptics are being lured with smartphones and apartments awarded at trivia quizzes, and every voter is being promised a goody bag with coveted sanitary supplies. Meduza, 9 June 2020

Moscow to Hand Out $145M in ‘Prizes’ to Voters for Putin’s Constitutional Reforms

Moscow authorities plan to attract voters for next month’s public vote on constitutional reforms that would allow President Vladimir Putin to rule Russia until 2036 with prizes totaling almost $144 million. The constitutional amendments, in addition to adding social guarantees to Russia’s basic law, reset Putin’s four previous terms as president, allowing him two additional six-year terms from 2024-2036. Public polls have said that close to a majority of Russians plans to vote in favor of the amendments. The Moscow Times, 11 June 2020

Over 500k Russians want to vote on Constitution amendments online – official

MOSCOW, June 11 (RAPSI) – Over 500,000 applications have been filed with from citizens of Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod Region willing to take part in the voting on Russian Constitution amendments online, Chair of the Central Election Commission Ella Pamfilova has stated. Moreover, about 240,000 applications more have been lodged by nationals who want to want at a place of stay through the Mobile Elector System, and more than 19,000 requests for the home voting have been submitted, she has added. RAPSI, 11 June 2020

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