“The United Russia” in Novosibirsk canceled “party lists” in City Council elections
35 out of 50 deputies voted (with the necessary 34) for the cancellation of party lists. Now all 50 deputies of the City Council will be elected in single-mandate constituencies. The Communist Party faction in the City Council is dissatisfied with this decision.
Without a doubt, such a decision will help members of “The United Russia” party bring more of their people to the City Council. The party’s rating is falling, and “The United Russia” brand will rather contribute to the outflow of votes and, overall, to a decrease in turnout. Today the Communist Party has 12 seats in Novosibirsk City Council and 4 of them were elected through party lists. The fact that the party in power does everything it wants is not surprising. Mutual support of the mayor of the city A. Lokot’ (the first secretary of the Communist Party regional committee) and “The United Russia” region governor A. Travnikov puts the party of official “communists” in quite a “slippery” position.
Moreover, recently it has become known about the creation of the “election coalition”, against the “alliance of the Communist Party and “The United Russia”, which is a joint effort of Novosibirsk liberals and nationalists. The coalition intends to nominate its candidates and not to allow the party in power and the Communist Party to divide the city districts between each other.
And then the question arises: are the Communist Party and “The United Russia” really playing along in Novosibirsk? As the past five years of A. Lokot’s mayor experience have shown, the “communists” have used his position to promote “their” people on budget positions. The regional committee of the Communist Party and the mayor personally either support the dominant party or make insignificant populism speeches on typical, neverchanging key issues of the city life: utility cost increase, district infrastruture development, the work of city contractors, etc. Thus, they are basically protecting the interests of local oligarchs. “The United Russia”, in its turn, simply uses such an “ally” to fully control the situation for its own purposes. That is, in fact, in Novosibirsk, the organization of the Communist Party, chasing the seat of the city mayor, became a hostage to the party in power, completely abandoning its fundamental role of the opposition.