ALDE member Yabloko in Russia recently conducted a survey together with the Levada Centre on President Vladimir Putin’s Constitution amendments. This survey – consisting of a representative sample of the Russian population – demonstrates that if there was an alternative vote, only 25% of the electorate would support the amendments pushed forward by Putin.
Since January, Yabloko has been working on an alternative amendment package, entitled ‘Constitution of Free People’. The recent survey shows that 80% of the respondents believe that Yabloko’s Constitutional amendments should also be voted on, not just those of Putin. In fact, all amendments included in the survey were supported by the majority of respondents, including for example 51% in favour of giving deputies the right to nominate a prime minister and 54% in favour of shortening the presidential term from six to four years.
“The results are not just a survey, this is the most reliable cut of public opinion,” says Yabloko chair Nikolai Rybakov. “And it brought us and our draft Constitution a victory. What Yabloko offers is supported by the majority of citizens, while Putin represents only a quarter of Russians; he is in the minority. It is clear that the full support of Putin and his policies is a bubble inflated by propaganda,” he added.
Taking place on 1 July, the respondents were also asked how they felt about holding a nation-wide vote on Putin’s amendments amid the on-going COVID-19 outbreak. 60% considered this to be wrong, while 33% thought the timing was not an issue.
“So the point is not only in “resetting” the presidential terms. The main threat to the future of Russia is an authoritarian system based on lies, fear and arbitrariness, which they intend to consolidate in the country’s Constitution with the help of amendments. We should not provide a turnout and vote for this,” Yabloko founder Grigory Yavlinsky wrote in an op-ed on this topic, published just days before the survey results.
The Levada Centre: Yabloko's amendments to the Constitution are more popular among Russians than Putin's amendments. https://t.co/Ias1JiXpO7— YABLOKO Party (@YablokoParty) June 22, 2020