News / Europe

Who is the Real Winner in Moscow Mayoral Election?

Moscow Mayor: Who is the Real Winner?i
X
September 09, 2013 10:33 PM
It was a rarity for Russia: a competitive election. It was also a rarity for Russia’s political and financial capital - the first vote in 10 years for the post of mayor of Moscow. James Brooke reports on what the vote results mean for Russian politics.
James Brooke
Alexei Navalny lost Sunday’s election for mayor of Moscow.
 
But, at the same time, he is seen by many as the winner.
 
Denied TV ads, billboard ads, or even banners from balconies, Navalny fielded an army of 14,000 young volunteers. According to a Levada Center poll, 69 percent of potential voters had personal contact with a Navalny volunteer.
 
Political analyst Lilia Shevtsova says Navalny’s American-style campaign marks a turning point in modern Russian politics.
 
“Navalny is definitely the winner in yesterday’s election," Shevtsova, a senior analyst with the Carnegie Moscow Center, said Monday. "Navalny’s result, over 27 percent, was not predicted by anyone. He can consolidate the electorate that is the new political generation in Russia.”

Sending a message
 
Sunday was the first time in a decade that Muscovites were allowed to vote for mayor. Olga Shukovskaya, a 40-year-old human rights lawyer, says she likes Navalny’s modern, democratic views.
 
Moscow mayoral election resultsMoscow mayoral election results
x
Moscow mayoral election results
Moscow mayoral election results
“I vote for Navalny because I believe he is the one that will guarantee my right to vote as a fundamental right and not a right that is given to me, as in the present case,” said Shukovskaya, who went to the polls with her young daughter, Dasha.
 
Konstantin Boryatski, a 29-year-old IT worker, said he voted for Navalny to send a message to the current mayor.
 
“I see the mistakes our current mayor is making and I would like them to listen to the opposition and let them speak their minds," Boryatski said after voting. "I think they will have many good ideas.”
 
Sergei Sobyanin, the current mayor, was appointed to the post three years ago.
 
On Sunday, by squeaking out a first round victory with 51 percent of the vote, Sobyanin won - but lost.
 
Analyst Shevtsova explains: “Fifty-one percent for the candidate of the Kremlin, for Sobyanin, it is really pretty low. It is a disaster for the Kremlin, because they have used all the gimmicks, all the instruments in their power to raise the turnout.”

Making the city shine?
 
But Sobyanin voters say he does a good job managing this city of 12 million people.
 
“Sobyanin is making real changes for Moscow that you can see," said Elena Toyakova, a bank employee. "I can see that the city is changing for the better.”
 
They say Sobyanin is making the city shine.
 
“Moscow is now more beautiful and cleaner," said Tatyana Alexseeyevna, a 62-year-old teacher. "Of course there are some minuses, but I think there are more pluses, and so I'm for Sobyanin. And I think things will get even better.”
 
The post of mayor of Moscow is considered the third most powerful political post in Russia - after the president and the prime minister - and many observers see it as a springboard to higher office. But Sunday’s low voter turnout and Sobyanin’s razor thin victory may have killed that talk.
 
“Sobyanin has failed personally to become the powerful potential candidate for the contender [for] the role of Putin’s successor,” said Shevtsova.
 
For now, the Kremlin is probably just happy to know that Moscow is in friendly hands.

You May Like

US Investors Eye IPO for China's Alibaba

E-commerce giant handled 80 percent of China's online business last year, logging more Internet transactions than US-based Amazon.com and eBay combined More

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

As cease-fire begins, Palestinians celebrate in streets; Israelis remain wary More

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

In treatment of a 12-year-old boy Chinese doctors used a 3-D printer and special software to create an exact replica of vertebra More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: stevemd2 from: baltimore MD
September 09, 2013 7:10 PM
' the question is whether anyone can do anything to make the scene better as long as the former head of the KGB runs the show. He's also one of the super-rich - as communism collapsed, those in the party with power got ownership of most of the state run businesses

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implanti
X
August 27, 2014 4:53 PM
A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. VOA News reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Northern California Quake: No Way to Know When Next One Will Hit

A magnitude 6.0 earthquake rocked northern California’s Napa Valley on Sunday. Roads twisted and water mains burst. It was the wine country’s most severe quake in 15 years, and while hospitals treated many people, no one was killed. Arash Arabasadi has more from Washington on what the future may hold for those residents living on a fault line.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Ukraine: Captured Troops Proof of Russian Role in Separatist Fight

Ukrainian officials say they have captured Russian soldiers on Ukrainian territory -- the latest accusation of Moscow's involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the Ukrainian side of the battle, where soldiers are convinced of Russia's role.
Video

Video Rubber May Soon Come From Dandelions

Synthetic rubber has been around for more than a century, but quality tires for cars, trucks and aircraft still need up to 40 percent or more natural rubber content. As the source of natural rubber, the rubber tree, is prone to disease and can be affected by bad weather. So scientists are looking for replacements. And as VOA’s George Putic reports, they may have found one in a ubiquitous weed.
Video

Video Jewish Life in Argentina Reflected in Yiddish Tango

Jewish people from across Europe and Russia have been immigrating to Argentina for hundreds of years. They brought with them dance music that were eventually mixed with Argentine tango. The result is Yiddish tango -- a fusion of melodies and cultural experiences that is still evolving today. Elizabeth Lee reports from the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles, where one band is bringing Yiddish tango to an American audience.

AppleAndroid