Posts Tagged

institutional change

On 15 January, President Vladimir Putin called for a “greater balance between the branches of power” as he announced significant changes to the Russian constitution. On the same day, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and his cabinet resigned and were quickly replaced. The new Prime Minister, Mikhail Mishustin, was a relatively unknown figure in Russia until recently, having previously spearheaded digital modernization efforts as head of the Federal Tax Service.  The surprise changes are seen as preparation for the Putin’s departure from the presidency in 2024 given current constitutional restrictions, which prevent him from being president more than two consecutive terms. The proposed constitutional reforms would not facilitate his return to the post in the future, however, but instead propose to weaken the presidency …

UPDATE: In the final week, the Czech presidential race opened up. Jan Fischer performed poorly in the debates, while the Czech Republic’s aristocratic foreign minister, Karel Schwarzenberg, picked up support from two sources: those who disliked both Zeman and Fischer, and those from the centre-right who started to doubt Fischer’s viability in a run-off against Zeman.