Market Overview

Putin Seeks To Take Power Away From The Post Of President As His Term Set To Expire

Putin Seeks To Take Power Away From The Post Of President As His Term Set To Expire

The Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday announced a host of reforms in the constitution, which he dubbed as "democratic."

What Happened

Putin, in his annual state of the union address, said that he wanted to shift the power from the President to the country's Parliament, the security council, and the Prime Minister, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The four-time President's current term is set to expire in 2024. Putin, who is serving his second consecutive term, is forbidden by the Russian constitution to continue in the role in 2024.

Putin previously circumvented the legality by taking the post of the prime minister, while installing his confidant, Dmitry Medvedev, as the President for a term in 2008, before taking over as the country's head again in 2012.

Why It Matters

According to the Journal, Putin could be implementing a different strategy this time to remain the "no. 1 person" in the country.

The President's latest announcements, which were accompanied by Medvedev's resignation as the country's Premier, could be his attempt at taking away the powers of the presidential post with him when he resigns in 2024.

The fact that he is starting four years ahead of his term's expiration could mean that he's taking a slow approach towards disrupting the status quo, unlike the Chinese leader Xi Jinping, who removed the restrictions on terms limit from the country's constitution in a bid to remain President for life.

Putin may have found his way around the laws, but has never violated them directly, according to the Journal.

The 67-year old who already heads the State Council could be aiming at controlling the government from the backgrounds in that position, Valery Solovei, an independent political analyst told the journal.

"A transition of power has already begun," Solovei said. "But Mr. Putin likely doesn't want to be in the spotlight anymore. After 20 years as leader, he likely wants to rule more from the shadows."

What's Next

The President has suggested a little-known technocrat Mikhail Mishustin to be the next prime minister, who has headed the country's Federal Tax Service since 2010. Russia's lower parliament, the State Duma, is set to review the suggestions starting Thursday.

Putin has also called for a referendum on his proposed changes, but no timeline has yet been given.

Photo Credit: Public domain photo via Wikimedia.

Posted-In: China RussiaGovernment News Politics Global Media General Best of Benzinga


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