Putin's Power Play

Every democracy holds elections, but not every country that holds elections is a true democracy. Case in point: Russia. President Vladimir Putin announced on Oct. 1 that he would lead the United Russia party in December's parliamentary elections. The move is designed to keep him in power although he is constitutionally barred from seeking a third consecutive term as President. By leading his party at the polls, he can become Prime Minister instead. He has already all but ensured victory by blocking some opposition parties from running and by using state-controlled TV to boost United Russia. As Prime Minister, Putin would be...

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