Putin's Popularity Propels Chosen Successor in Russian Election

  • February 27, 2008
  • By Erin Carrier-Kretschmer and Kathleen Holzwart

On the eve of the 2008 Russian presidential election, opinion polling suggests the result of the election might be a foregone conclusion: Vladimir Putin's handpicked successor, Dmitry Medvedev, is likely to become the next president of Russia.

Pew Global Attitudes Project survey data from 2007, along with other recent surveys, have found strong and consistent public support for Putin. And while the world at large may be concerned about Putin's increased centralization of power and rolling-back of democratic rights, there is little indication that Russians share these concerns. In fact, surveys consistently find that Russians have a definite preference for a strong leader over a democratic government, and large majorities say that a strong economy is more important than a good democracy to solve Russia's problems.

Read the complete commentary Putin's Popularity Propels Chosen Successor in Russian Election on the Pew Research Center Web site.