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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

City Duma Campaign Kicks Off


United Russia put the finishing touches on a list of prominent candidates for the Moscow City Duma on Monday as campaigning for the October elections officially kicked off.
United Russia’s candidates will include four State Duma deputies and several senior Moscow city officials — none of whom intend to take seats, Vedomosti reported Monday.
The pro-Kremlin party, which controls 29 of the 35 seats in the current City Duma, has drawn up a list of candidates that includes State Duma Deputy Vladimir Gruzdev; Mayor Yury Luzhkov’s former representative to the City Duma, Anatoly Petrov; carmaker ZiL general director Konstantin Laptev; the head of a City Hall department and two prefects, the report said, citing a source in the party’s Moscow branch.
The source said none of the top candidates would work in the City Duma after the Oct. 11 vote.
It is common practice for parties to attract votes by putting well-known names on their election lists who withdraw their names after the party wins.
In line with the practice, the Communist Party is considering putting forward its leader, Gennady Zyuganov, or his first deputy, Ivan Melnikov, a party source told Interfax on Monday.
The Right Cause and Yabloko parties are considering a single ticket topped by Right Cause co-chairman Boris Titov and followed by Yabloko leader Sergei Mitrokhin, a senior Yabloko source told Interfax.
The Communists now have four seats, while Yabloko has two.
The Moscow city elections commission started registering candidates on Monday and will continue until Aug. 10, Interfax reported. Moscow voters will elect 18 candidates on party lists and 17 in single-mandate districts.
The upcoming vote will see the threshold for winning seats drop from 10 percent to 7 percent. The elections will also mark the first time that seats are distributed under the Imperiali system, which provides a disproportionate number of seats to election winners.