Crushing victory for United Russia, but in this arctic region, Putin’s party is affected



Putin’s ruling party, United Russia, comfortably won the majority of seats in the State Duma, the lower house of the Russian parliament.

Preliminary figures show that the party won 49.8% of the votes cast on the party lists. Added to this is a landslide victory in single-member districts. According to party leader Andrei Turchak, United Russia will win a total of 315 seats in the Legislative Assembly.

This is a super-majority, which will allow the Party to endorse any decision desired by the federal government and the Kremlin. The State Duma has 450 deputies, half of whom are elected from party lists and the other half from single-member constituencies.

“The secret of the Party’s success is its daily work for the welfare of the people. [and] the party has once again shown that it knows how to face challenges and take responsibility, ”Turchak said in a comment on Monday.

United Russia has become the largest party in virtually all regions. With two exceptions. Among them is the Nenets Autonomous Okrug, where Putin’s party was defeated by the Communists.

Preliminary results from the far north region show that United Russia only won 27.8% of the vote against 33.1% of the Communists.

This is not the first time that AO Nenets has gone against the grain in elections. In 2020, the small oil-rich region was the only part of the country to vote against Putin’s constitutional reform. The population of the region is only about 45,000 inhabitants, many of whom are indigenous Nenets.


United Russia also had a weak election in the neighboring Komi Republic, where it won by a narrow margin ahead of the Communists. Preliminary results show United Russia won 29.4 percent of the vote against 27 percent for the Communists.

The results mean that Oleg Mikhailov, the representative of the Communist Party who has repeatedly challenged Putin’s party in the region, gets a seat in the Duma. In 2020, Mikhailov intended to run against acting governor Vladimir Uiba in the governor’s election, but his candidacy was ultimately rejected by the regional electoral commission.

In his social media channels Novaya Respublika, Mikhailov managed to promote an open political debate on the situation in the region, and he sharply criticized Governor Uiba.

Oleg Milkhailov (left) has been in conflict with Komi governor Uiba on several occasions. From now on, he will represent the northern region of Russia in the State Duma. Screenshot of the video

Meanwhile, in other regions of northern Russia such as Murmansk and Arkhangelsk, United Russia won overwhelming victories with 59% and 32% of the vote, respectively. In the latter region, no less than five parties won more than 5% of the vote, including the liberal Yabloko party and the new “New People” party.

The participation rate at the federal level was 45.15%. In Murmansk the turnout was 43 percent, in Arkhangelsk – 40 percent, in Komi – 39.5 percent, and in WA Nenets – 42.6 percent.

The head of the Russian Election Commission, Ella Pamfilova, says the vote was free and fair. But independent election watchdog Golos says election violations are rife.

According to the organization described as a “foreign agent” by the Russian authorities, candidates, observers and election officials have been exposed to threats and outright force in a number of areas. A large number of forgeries have been reported at polling stations across the country, Golos informs.

This is in addition to extensive repressive action against opposition forces ahead of the vote. A large number of liberal candidates, including politicians associated with Alexei Navalny, have been barred from standing and news channels blocked.

Russian authorities have stepped up pressure against social media platforms and, on the eve of the vote, Apple and Google have removed Navalny’s ‘Smart Voting’ app from their stores

Sources close to the move from Google and Apple told reporters the move was made under pressure from Russian authorities, including threats to arrest local staff from the tech giants.

Popular messenger Telegram also removed Navalny’s “Smart Voting” bot, and Google Docs and YouTube videos containing lists of recommended candidates were blocked on Sunday, reports the Moscow Times.



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