Publication: Monitor Volume: 1 Issue: 127

. Gennady Zyuganov, the leader of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, (KPRF) wanted to join forces with the Congress of Russian Communities (KRO) in the upcoming elections. Zyuganov offered the KRO the same deal which the communists have struck with the Agrarian Party. Under that arrangement, the partners agree to combine their strength against the pro-government and reformist candidates in selected districts. Where either the Communist or Agrarian candidate is clearly stronger, the weaker will drop out of the race and throw his support to the stronger. Their common adversaries, the pro-government and reformist parties, are more divided against one another than are the various parties of nationalist coloration. But the KRO has kept its distance, and yesterday KRO spokesman Vladimir Klimov said that making common cause with the KPRF would be a tactical mistake. Later, Zyuganov confirmed that an alliance was not in the cards, at least not before the elections. (1)

Two blocs from opposite ends of the political spectrum have thrown in the towel after being disqualified by the Central Electoral Commission (TsIK). The "Democratic Russia"/Free Trade Unions bloc, although reinstated by the Supreme Court October 30, announced that it is withdrawing its candidates and switching its support to Yabloko. Co-leader Galina Starovoitova’s statement urges all democratic parties and groups to rally round Yabloko as the party best placed to promote democratization and reforms in the new Duma. The TsIK also disqualified the ultranationalist Union of Patriots, led by Col. General (ret.) Valentin Achalov, which fell short of the 200,000 voter signatures required for registration. The blocs will not appeal the decision, but instead will support Aleksandr Rutskoi’s Derzhava (Great Power) movement. Today the Supreme Court took up Yabloko’s and Derzhava’s appeals from the decisions which disqualified them. Many observers thought the Court might rule against Derzhava. However Tass reports that the Court overruled the ban on Derzhava, and gave the Commission two days in which to accept Derzhava’s application. As of this writing, the Court has not ruled on Yabloko. (2)

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