06MOSCOW11631, RODINA: SATISFIED BUT SUING

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06MOSCOW11631 2006-10-17 14:42 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXYZ0006
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #1631/01 2901442
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 171442Z OCT 06
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4036
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS MOSCOW 011631 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT FOR EUR/RUS 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: PGOV KDEM PHUM SOCI RS
SUBJECT: RODINA: SATISFIED BUT SUING 
 
REF: A. MOSCOW 11413 
     B. MOSCOW 10861 
 
------- 
Summary 
------- 
 
1. (SBU)  Rodina had a poor showing in the October 8 regional 
elections; it crossed the 7 percent threshold for 
representation in only one region: Astrakhan.  Nevertheless, 
Deputy Chair of Rodina's Executive Committee Maksim Puchkov 
in an October 12 conversation found cause for optimism in the 
votes won by the three parties of the "relevant left" 
(Rodina, the Russian Party of Life, and the Russian Party of 
Pensioners). Puchkov told the Embassy that Rodina planned to 
bring suits alleging impropriety at the ballot box in three 
regions: Astrakhan, Tuva, and Sverdlovsk.  Rodina would lead 
the planned three-party coalition because it was deserving as 
"the only party with an ideology," not because its Duma seats 
provided a platform for legislative initiatives as Sergey 
Mironov, head of the would-be coalition partner Russian Party 
of Life, had asserted. End summary. 
 
-------------------------- 
October 8 Election Results 
-------------------------- 
 
2. (U) In October 8 regional elections, Rodina won 16.5 
percent of the vote in Astrakhan and crossed the 7 percent 
threshold for regional legislative representation.  It almost 
qualified in Chuvashiya as well, where it won 6.5 percent of 
the  vote.  In five other regions (the Jewish Autonomous 
Republic, Novgorod, Primorye, Sverdlovsk, and Tuva), Rodina 
reaped between 2.3 percent to 4.5 percent of the ballots.  In 
Karelia and Lipetsk, it was not included on the ballot. 
 
3. (U) Those results notwithstanding, Deputy Chair of 
Rodina's Executive Committee Maksim Puchkov told us on 
October 12 that he was pleased and that the returns boded 
well for the March 2007 regional elections.  Puchkov 
contended that the three parties of the incipient coalition 
had won 30 percent in the regions.  (Embassy's calculations 
do not match this assessment on a region-by-region basis, and 
Yuriy Korguniuk of Indem and other analysts speculate that 
the sum of the three will be even less than that of its 
parts.) 
 
----------------- 
Bringing Lawsuits 
----------------- 
 
4. (U) Puchkov claimed there had been irregularities 
throughout the regions.  Not only had voters been told how to 
vote, but in Astrakhan votes that had originally been 
"against all" were tallied as ballots for United Russia. 
Rodina will be bringing suit against the regional election 
commission in Astrakhan, said Puchkov.  It would also be 
going to court in Tuva and in Sverdlovsk, where it alleged 
there had been improper use of administrative resources. 
Suits were contemplated in other regions, as well. 
 
5. (U) Puchkov agreed that the courts could take as long as 
six months to reach a verdict in the cases, but he seemed 
unconcerned about the timeline, and thought it unlikely that 
the verdicts, even if reached before the March 2007 regional 
elections, would have an impact. 
 
---------------- 
Future of Rodina 
---------------- 
 
6. (U) Both Puchkov and Pavel Shashkin, of Rodina's 
international division, were optimistic about Rodina's 
future.  Their party's strength was its ideology, which would 
not change with the whims of the administration, as was the 
case with the Kremlin-sponsored United Russia.  They 
described Rodina's platform as "attractive" and based on 
conservative values associated with the Orthodox Church and a 
desire to re-generate Russia's domestic industries.  (Moscow 
observers concluded (ref a) that the more "ideological" 
parties did not fare well in the October 8 elections.) 
 
7. (U) Puchkov disagreed with Russian Party of Life Chairman 
Mironov's assertion that Rodina would form the "basis" of the 
new coalition party only because it had State Duma seats. 
(Mironov said that he hoped to use Rodina's Duma faction to 
introduce new legislation.  Duma representation also gives 
the new, coalition party access to government subsidies.) 
8. (U) In addition to possible disagreements with its future 
coalition partners in Moscow, arguments over who will head 
the coalition in the regions are increasingly surfacing in 
the press.  Additionally, there are press rumors that some 
within Rodina will resist the planned, three-party merger. 
 
9. (U) Despite these fault lines and United Russia's 
continuing firm grip on power, Puchkov was confident that the 
new coalition would do well in the March regional elections. 
(The March 11 elections will be held in 17 regions and are 
the last major elections before the State Duma contest.) 
 
------- 
Comment 
------- 
 
10. (SBU) Rodina representatives' seeming lack of concern 
about the October 8 election results and their party's role 
in the three-party coalition to be formalized October 28 may 
be the belief that Rodina will do
 better in the March 
regional contests due to the administrative resources it will 
receive as one of the Kremlin's favored two parties. Ex-party 
chief Dmitriy Rogozin (ref b) retains a high profile, 
including on television and in the Duma, where he has used 
the anti-Georgian campaign to push for his brand of 
"enlightened nationalism." 
BURNS

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