To What Extent Does The Legislature Restrict The Power Of The Russian President?

2202 words - 9 pages

Upon an initial glance at the role of the Russian Presidency it is relatively easy for one to assume that the role shares a great deal with that of the other Presidential government systems in operation throughout the world. However, when one is looking at the political organisation of the Russian Federation it is important to bear in mind that the country as it exists today is barely a decade old and as such has a presidential system very much in its infancy. In comparison to that of the presidencies of the United States of America or the French Republic, the role of the Russian President is one of significant hegemonic authority with little precedent guidance to follow.Following the adoption of Russia's constitution in 1993 there has been eager analysis by the West to see how her 'old enemy' would prosper after the fall of Communist Party rule and the dissolution of the USSR. Although the ground for the presidency was largely laid by Mikhail Gorbachev (former General Secretary of the Communist Party of the USSR) the role has been more greatly defined by the Russian statesman, Boris Yeltsin. Yeltsin's ability in gaining control of the Russian Federation at the time in which he did has left him with a relatively free hand in crafting what has been recognised as the role of the Russian executive as well as giving him the title of the First Russian President.When one is considering the effectiveness and the potency of the Russian Presidents power it is important to consider both the office and the men who have held it thus far. The Russian Presidency unlike any other is probably more characterised by the men who have held the title than any constitutional power it is afforded . The fact that the Russian constitution itself was drafted by one of the men shows just how much the above statement is true. In addition to this however, one must also analyse Russian history, even that which goes beyond living memory, to see perhaps another explanation for the comfort with which the Russian people seem to endure being governed by a powerful individual. Throughout Russia's history she has been governed in a manner by which a strong individual rules from above with almost complete authority. This follows from not only the Communist period in which the General Secretaries of the CPSU, Lenin and Stalin, ruled the entire union, but also from the previous Tsarist era in which the Russian leader believed he was appointed directly by God. Regardless of who appointed these leaders it seems that in the Presidency the Russian people may have found an acceptable, though in this case democratically elected, form of leadership .As I have already touched upon the present role of the Russian President was almost entirely formed by a president who was incumbent when the role was being created. As such the role of the Russian President is very much one that weighs heavily on an almost supra-presidential ideal. Unlike the Presidents of other nations the role of the President...

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