13 Jan 2018 15:33

Longer than usual ballots might be needed for 2018 presidential elections in Russia - CEC chairperson

VLADIVOSTOK/MOSCOW. Jan 13 (Interfax) - Longer than usual voting ballots might have to be printed for the upcoming presidential elections in Russia in March 2018, as up to 20 people might hypothetically run in them, Russian Central Elections Commission (CEC) Chairperson Ella Pamfilova said on Saturday.

"Let's imagine hypothetically: 12 people [nominated by political parties] plus two self-nominees are collecting signatures now, and we have already de facto put two more people on the ballot, so if you count, there might be a maximum of 16 people on the ballot today," Pamfilova said in a news program shown on the Rossiya 1 (VGTRK) television channel on Saturday.

"Considering that representatives of several other parties will come before midnight today, there could be even more, from two to 20 others," she said.

She refrained from guessing whether the standard one-sheet ballot would be enough to print the names of all presidential candidates.

"I can't say," Pamfilova said in reply to a relevant question from the program's host, Sergei Brilev.

Anyway, "our optical scan voting machines can process long double sheets" if all potential contenders are registered as presidential candidates, Pamfilova said.