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Russian Electoral Fraud: A Threat to Constitutional Governance

Friday, September 23, 2016 7:32
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In spite of Ella Pamfilova’s appointment in March, 2016 to “clean house and oversee transparent, democratic elections,” . . . “a statistical analysis of the official preliminary results of the country’s September 18 [2016] State Duma elections points to a familiar story: massive fraud in favor of the ruling United Russia party.”[1] “The results of the current Duma elections were falsified on the same level as the Duma and presidential elections of 2011, 2008, and 2007, the most falsified elections in post-Soviet history, as far as we can tell,” physicist and data analyst Sergei Shpilkin said to The Atlantic.”  In 2008, Shpilkin estimated that United Russia actually won 277 seats in the Duma instead of the constitutional majority of 315 that it was awarded.[2] This means that Putin’s party could unilaterally amend the Russian constitution. From a constitutional standpoint, either the hurdles in the amendment process are too low or the election fraud has been so massive the entire form of government is impaired.

The full essay is at “Russian Electoral Fraud.”



1. Valentin Baryshnikov and Robert Coalson, “12 Million Extra Votes for Putin’s Party,” The Atlantic, September 21, 2016.
2. Robert Coalson, “Russia: How the Kremlin Manages to Get the Right Results,” Radio Free Europe, March 7, 2008.

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