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Political And Economic Changes In Russia Since The Fall Of The Soviet Union

1530 words - 6 pages

Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia has undergone many changes. These changes were very profound and included the drastic restructuring of both the political structure and the economy. When the Russian people became dissatisfied with the communist system, they pushed for a regime change, which resulted in the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the introduction of a democratic system. Along with these political changes came the economic change from communism to a free market system. The new system and the old system, while initially seeming like they have many differences, are similar in the corruptness and oppression of the people. Because of this, the political and economic transitions from the old system of communism to the new democratic system in Russia have not been successful.
The Soviet Union had an official government structure, which included a legislative branch, and executive branch, and a judicial branch. However, the official government had no real power under Soviet rule and all of the actual power was held in the Communist Party. The Russian Federation, which emerged as a democratic nation after the collapse of Soviet Union, also includes the three branches of government. However, the power does not lie in the political party system but with the actual government. The executive branch consists of both a President and a Prime Minister. The President is directly elected every six years since 2012, and before that it was every four years. They are limited to two consecutive terms, but can run for an unlimited amount of non-consecutive terms. The Prime Minister is appointed by the President but must get approved by the lower house of the legislature, the Duma. Constitutionally the Prime Minister is the head of government and the President is the head of state. However in actuality, the President acts as the head of government is usually more powerful than the Prime Minister. The exception to this was when Vladimir Putin was the Prime Minister from 2008 to 2012. The presidency is very powerful and they can issue decrees, Martial Law, and act as commander-in-chief. The Prime Minister position on the other hand is not very powerful and they oversee the cabinet.
The legislature, also known as the Federal Assembly, consists of a lower house, the Duma, and an upper house, the Federation Council. The Duma has 450 members, half of which are elected though single member districts and the other half through closed list, proportional representation. They are the more powerful of the two houses and can issue a vote of no confidence, but the President can ignore it. The Federation Council has 166 members, which comes from two representatives of eighty-three local entities. They mainly deal with the subnational jurisdictions and they can veto legislation, but the Duma can override this with a two-thirds vote. The judiciary includes a Constitutional Court, a Supreme Court, and a High Court of Arbitration. Also included in the...

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