July 16, 2024

Russian dictator Vladimir Putin may soon announce that he will run for president again in 2024, the Russian state-controlled newspaper Kommersant wrote on Oct. 3.

The potential announcement would likely occur during the opening of the international “Russia” exhibition in November. The exhibition is intended to showcase Putin’s achievements, as well as presentations of illegally-annexed territories of Ukraine.

Although he has yet to officially announce, unnamed sources told Kommersant that the campaign will be built around the concept of Russia as a separate civilization, based on traditional values, that is beset on all sides by enemies.

It is unclear if other candidates will nominally participate, but if Putin decides to run, his victory is all but assured. Freedom House, a nonprofit advocating international democracy, gave Russia a 0/4 score in its 2022 report card on political freedoms in the country. “Russia has never experienced a democratic transfer of power between rival groups,” described Freedom House. Any meaningful opposition is prevented from having a fair chance at winning elections, creating “an authoritarian political system (that) is concentrated in the hands of President Vladimir Putin.”

On Sept. 11, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that Putin would have no real competitors if he decided to run.

If reelected, Putin could serve another six-year term, which would keep him in power until 2030, 30 years since he was first elected president. In 2021, Russia passed a law that would enable Putin to retain his position until 2036. There is nothing necessarily stopping him from further revising the law to allow for more terms.

Read also: Editorial: Today’s Russia is fascist. It’s time to start calling it that

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