Russia changes electoral law to allow remote voting

Russia changes electoral law to allow remote voting

Kremlin has confirmed that Russian President Vladimir Putin has approved changes to the country’s existing electoral law so that the Russians can vote while remote. The amendment to the law now enables citizens to vote in future polls either by mail or electronically.

However, there are opposes of these new changes to the electoral law. Many say that the changes will make it easier to manipulate the voting system and will also make it difficult to detect or notice irregularities in the process.

Many have also said that the changes have come at the time when the country is a fighting coronavirus. And given various mitigation measures, including lockdown measures, the public will not be able to resist these new changes.

On the whole, the amendment to the electoral law now requires that an electronic voting system be available nationwide, which should be ready for both local and national elections and for referenda.

However, it remains unclear whether the said voting system will be ready for the upcoming constitutional referendum.

The referendum that the Russian President himself proposed when he spoke to the Assembly on January 15, 2020, and which is intended to clear the way for the president to vie for two more presidential terms after 2024 has been postponed.

The 2020 referendum, which will be the first since 1993, was originally scheduled for April 22, but was postponed later due to coronavirus.

Though, the official date is yet to be announced but according to a media rumor mill, the possible date could be June 24.

President Putin has remained in power since 1999 either as prime minister or president, but current law now prohibits him from applying for another term as president. If the referendum fails, he will be prevented from serving after 2024. But if it’s passed, it might keep him in power until 2036.

Putin served the maximum of two consecutive terms between 2000 and 2008 before a four-year term as prime minister.

In 2012 he made a return to the Kremlin after the term was extended and was re-elected for a fourth term in 2018 in the Kremlin.

Although many are against the election changes, others support them. They say that the new voting system will help reduce the spread of this contagious virus that has shaken the world since December last year, and its fate has yet to be known as there is no approved cure or vaccine.

On the other hand, there is concern about the security of this new remote voting system, which is now nullifying voters’ demands for a physical visit to polling stations. However, it has been reported that the system has already been used in Moscow.

The system in Moscow was said to have been tested four times and there were no possible hacking gaps.

Others see the changes to the system as a political storm. The certain changes in the electoral system are seen as a way through which Putin can expand his influence on power. However, the Russian president rejected this suggestion.

Nelson Richards is a Seasoned Journalist with nearly 6 years of experience. While studying at Case Western Reserve University, Located at Cleveland. Nelson found a passion for finding and writing articles which are published in Well known Media Publications such as Tnt Publications and Ohio News Network. As a contributor to Chroniclex Nelson Covers National Topics.

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