Hey, Foregone Conclusion Fans: Big News Out of Russia!

im电竞官网-In an election on Tuesday, Vladimir Putin was elected Tsar of all the Russias.

moscow, russia   june 24 president of russia and commander in chief of the armed forces vladimir putin c makes a speech in red square during a victory day military parade marking the 75th anniversary of the victory in world war ii, on june 24, 2020 in moscow, russia the 75th anniversary marks the end of the great patriotic war when the nazi's capitulated to the then soviet union photo by sergey guneev   host photo agency via getty images
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im电竞官网-Oh hey, fans of foregone conclusions, Russia held an election on Tuesday. Vladimir Putin was elected Tsar of all the Russias. Well, not really. Technically, the election dealt with a series of constitutional amendments, one of which guarantees that our president*’s favorite international phone pal will be in office until 2036. This would give Putin the longest tenure of any Russian ruler since...checks notes...oh, yes, Peter the Great.

That amendment, however, was tucked into a whole raft of other hot-button referenda, including a ban on gay marriage and a formal institutional recognition of a “faith in God.” There was also a provision that gave some sort of pride of place to ethnic Russians, something that historically has not worked out well for those people who are not ethnic Russians. These were seen as mechanisms to goose support for the one amendment that really matters: extending Putin’s term of office. The other amendments appealed to the deep sense of Russian grievance over the country’s perceived fall from international influence, especially among older Russians. From :

For Yudina, these changes are needed to protect traditional Russian values, under threat from Western influences. “For some reason, young people are more oriented toward the West,” she says after a family lunch on the patio of the family’s summer home outside Moscow. “Russia is a completely different country; we have a different mentality, we have spiritual values in relation to family and marriage, between a man and a woman. … I would like to keep these traditions.”...
Svetlana Khokhlova, 50, a former conservative lawmaker in the Istra district near Moscow, says she believes the country’s youth have become victims of “anti-Russian propaganda.” She has taken to social media to try to persuade young people — who often do not follow state-run journalism — of the importance of supporting the reforms. “People who are against Putin’s constitution today did not know the USSR as a superpower, and they did not know the disaster of the first post-Soviet years,” she says.

Which is not to say that the elections were devoid of user-friendly fun. As reports, there were...prizes! Tell them what they’ve won, Johnny Olson!

The referendum is both momentous and absurd. Russians can endorse (or oppose) a plan to let Putin run for two more terms, potentially prolonging his rule beyond that of Stalin, and then win a washing machine or a hairdryer. The raffles and prize giveaways are just part of a broad get-out-the-vote effort endorsed by the government. Companies have authorized their own prize giveaways that could allow them to track employee voting, while government workers such as teachers and doctors – some of whom are busy fighting the coronavirus outbreak – are reportedly being urged to cast ballots, in systematic attempts to boost turnout.

Apparently, partly because of the pandemic, the rules for the election were even more of an improv.

It is not an official referendum and the rules are custom-designed. Unlike in normal elections, voting is allowed online and takes place over a week, between 25 June and 1 July. As continues to grapple with the coronavirus, some voting officials have decided it is safer to collect ballots outdoors, planting ballot boxes on tree stumps, in the boots of cars, in public buses and on plastic patio furniture.

Of course, here in America, on tree stumps. After all, we know how to run free and fair elections here in the United States of Amer...wait, I’ll start again.

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