22 Dec 2018 19:15

Russian election laws unlikely to be changed - Golos movement

MOSCOW. Dec 22 (Interfax) - No serious change should be expected in the election legislation as the result of the work of an ad hoc group set up by the presidential administration, because the ruling party is against that, according to Arkady Lyubarev, a board senior member of the Golos movement which campaigns for voter rights.

"A United Russia representative and - which is the same - the heads of the committees, they are against practically any serious change," Lyubarev said on Friday after the first meeting of a working group, of which he is a member.

The meeting was chaired by the presidential administration's first deputy chief Sergei Kiriyenko.

"They [United Russia Party] are against touching the 'municipal filter,' let it work one more cycle. In reality, they themselves may not well remember that the municipal filter has already run one cycle and gone into the second," Lyubarev said.

A typical cycle is five years, "so all regions can go through" and "the municipal filter has been working for real for seven years now," Lyubarev said.

"And as for the single voting day, ditto: [United Russia] keeps resisting. The LDRP [Liberal Democratic Party] and A Just Russia are for moving it. That they all have various proposals is another matter," Lyubarev said.

The working group is due to meet next in February. "February is late," he says, but "Kiriyenko said this is not late, we'll manage."

The working group has two months to prepare proposals on the municipal filter and rescheduling election day.

The group "discussed a very wide circle of issues out of those that are very concrete and solvable, and those that require further discussion and for which working subgroups were formed to discuss - in some understandably near future, in about two months - these topics and prepare proposals for the working group regarding their possible resolution or solution options," the Central Election Commission's deputy head Nikolai Bulayev told Interfax after the working group's meeting.