Presidential transplantation in Russia enters final phase

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Baev, Pavel K. (2008) Presidential transplantation in Russia enters final phase, Eurasia Daily Monitor, 4 February.

The deliberate elimination of any “campaigning” from Medvedev’s steady march to the presidency was exemplified by three carefully measured steps taken by the Kremlin last week.

Putin has also cut down on poignant remarks and aggressive statements such as his memorable Munich speech of a year ago.

During the petro-prosperity period, hopes for a better life transformed into feelings of entitlement – and the Kremlin is now teetering on the brink of disappointing this “irrational exuberance.” This betrayal of the social contract, which curtails democracy but guarantees prosperity, could destroy the legitimacy of Putin’s system of power, already weakened by the diminution of the siloviki. Dull quasi-elections may buy time for Messrs Putin, Medvedev, Zubkov and their courtiers, who are preparing for politics as usual.

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Pavel K. Baev

Pavel K. Baev

Research Professor