Russian Parliament will discuss the latest changes in Russia's electoral system, as a bill returning the “none of the above” option to ballot papers in legislative, but not presidential, elections, is received for consideration.
Denying people the option of voting against all candidates infringes on their right to “adequately express their will,” claims a note accompanying the draft, available on the State Duma’s website.
The first of three required readings is expected to take place in December, said the head of the Duma’s constitutional committee, Vladimir Pligin.
The bill, penned by a group of senators, covers elections to municipal, regional and federal parliaments, but excludes presidential and gubernatorial elections.
The “against all” option was on ballot papers from 1991 to 2006, but was dropped on the Kremlin’s insistence after it began to gain popularity. However, this prompted the disaffected part of the electorate to skip elections altogether or vote for candidates they did not really support, the draft’s accompanying note said.
According to the independent Levada Center pollster, 78 percent of Russians support the return of the “none of the above” option to ballot papers.
Author: Julia Alieva