Today, the Central Election Commission reinstalled the Union of Right Forces (SPS) for the March 11 election in Samara. Earlier, SPS’s registration was denied by the regional EC on procedural ground; SPS is still banned from running in four regions (Dagestan, Vologda, Pskov, and Tumen).
CEC has left stand the decision of the St. Petersburg city EC to refuse Yabloko’ s registration of. Although CEC has admitted that the percentage of invalid signatures in the Yabloko party list (10.49%) was lower than initially reported, it was still higher than allowed by law (10%).
The CEC Chairman, Alexander Veshnyakov proposed that in the future, political parties were allowed to participate in elections without registration at all. He argued that with the law on political parties in place – regulating their membership and the presence in the regions — any additional regulation became obsolete.
Veshnyakov is a rare example of a smart, competent and relatively independent Russian bureaucrat. I’m afraid that this is a single most serious obstacle for him to get re-elected CEC Chairman.