Putin’s Bid for Power: the End of Russia’s Federalism?
A.Mommen, Professor, Amsterdam University, tries to analyze the changes in the centre/regions relations in Russia after Putin became President and to work out a more or less definite judgment about the possible fates of Russia’s federalism considering its specific features.The author’s attention is concentrated on the contradictions between the centralizing forces, on the one hand, and regional and political cleavages, on the other. During the Yeltsin decade, local authorities were enabled to acquire more political weight and influence than they intrinsically could have. At the same time the breakdown of the productive industrial and agrarian system in combination with an increasing economic and political preponderance of the producers of energy and exporters of energy and commodities created new opportunities for local power brokers to emerge as intermediaries between local interests and the Kremlin. This political configuration was molded into Rules and Constitutions drafted by local political subjects who tried to act independently from the political centre. As for Putin, with his bid for power, he apparently wants to reunify Russia’s legal and juridical structures at the expense of the local power brokers. Curtailing the influence of the governors had become a necessity in order to reinforce the Kremlin’s tax raising capabilities and to make the country more attractive to foreign investors. Putin’s allies in this battle will be the populists in the Duma and all social forces still having a vital interest promoting economic recovery and good governance, the author maintains.
Content No. 5, 2000
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A View of the History of Russian Territorial Government System. – Polis. Political Studies. 2000. No5
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Kuzmin A.S., Melvin N., Nechayev V.D.,
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Unitarianism or Federalism (To the Question of Future Organization of Russia’s State Expanse). – Polis. Political Studies. 2000. No5