Russia’s Presidential Elections 2024: Candidates and Political Overview

Russia presidential elections 2024 logo
The logo of the Russia’s Presidential Elections 2024 (Credits: ЦИК РФ, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

Geopolitical Report ISSN 2785-2598 Volume 40 Issue 4
Author: Silvia Boltuc

The upcoming Russian presidential elections, scheduled for March 15th-17th, 2024, are a pivotal moment in the nation’s domestic politics. Despite Western claims of irregularities, these elections represent a significant opportunity for Vladimir Putin to reaffirm his leadership and governance.

The Russian political landscape, marred by the Ukraine conflict and Navalny’s mysterious death, underscores the geopolitical importance of the current President’s potential re-election. This report delves into the background, candidates, and implications surrounding the elections, shedding light on the complex dynamics shaping Russia’s political future.

Russia’s Presidential Elections and Candidates:
Background Information

The presidential elections in Russia, set to occur on March 15th-17th, 2024, will determine the country’s leader for the next six years, until 2030. The electoral process involves secret voting at polling stations and remotely, regulated by the Constitution of the Russian Federation, along with federal laws governing presidential elections and electoral rights.

Along with Vladimir Putin, current President of the Russian Federation, the final list of Russian presidential candidates includes Leonid Slutsky, Chairman of the Liberal Democratic Party, Vladislav Davankov, representative of the New People party, and Nikolai Kharitonov, candidate from the Communist Party of the Russian Federation.

  1. Vladimir Putin: 71 years old, on December 8th, 2023, he announced his candidature in the upcoming Russian presidential elections. He presented his documents to the Central Election Commission on December 18th, 2023, positioning himself as a self-nominated candidate, and gathered 1.8 million signatures from residents in different parts of Russia in his favour. United Russia also supported his candidacy. Vladimir Putin has held the position of Russian president on four separate occasions. He won the elections in 2000, 2004, 2012, and 2018.
  2. Leonid Slutsky: 56 years old, he was selected as a candidate representing the Liberal Democratic Party. Following the passing of its longstanding leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky, he assumed leadership of the party in 2022. Prior to this, the politician had served in several roles, such as being the deputy head of the delegation from the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) and the leader of the International Public Foundation “Russian Peace Foundation”. Additionally, he holds the position of department head for International Relations and Integration Processes at the Faculty of Political Science in Moscow State University.
  3. Nikolai Kharitonov: 75-year-old, the politician, who represents the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, has previously been a candidate in the election race. In 2004, he participated in the election and was the second highest vote-getter, losing only to Vladimir Putin. During the early 1990s, Kharitonov played a key role in establishing the Agrarian Party of Russia (APR), but later departed in 2007 to join the Communist Party of the Russian Federation. The politician currently serves as a State Duma deputy and also leads the parliamentary committee responsible for the development of the Far East and the Arctic.
  4. Vladislav Davankov: the New People party nominated Vladislav Davankov’s candidacy for participation in the elections. Davankov, 40 years old, entered the political arena in 2020. He assumed the role of a State Duma deputy in 2021 and joined both the budget and taxes committee and the commission responsible for scrutinising the country’s federal budget expenditures. In October 2021, he became deputy chairman of the State Duma. Davankov ran for the position of mayor of Moscow in the 2023 elections. In the final vote, he secured a fourth place with 5.34% of the votes.

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Why Does It Matter?

Russia’s geopolitical significance, especially amidst the Ukraine conflict and strained relations with the West, elevates the importance of these elections. Western criticism, fuelled by suspicions about the political system and the death of Navalny, frames the narrative around the electoral process.

Putin’s potential re-election could solidify his leadership, reinforcing Russia’s stance in the face of sanctions from Washington and Brussels. The outcomes of these elections may affect the nation’s trajectory, influencing its response to external pressures and shaping its role on the global stage. The unresolved issues surrounding Navalny’s death and concerns about electoral transparency contribute to the complexity of Russia’s political landscape.

Two years of Ukraine conflict have caused a fraction between the West and the Russians, as underlined by Kremlin’s narrative of the increasing Russophobia in Europe and the United States. Therefore, considering also Western sanctions, even sceptic Russians might rally behind the current president and foster a growing sense of nationalism.

The lingering memory of the 90s, when the opening to the West resulted in a severe crisis, still influences some Russian voters who remain loyal to the leader who guided them through that difficult time.

Furthermore, the potential for a significant change in the Kremlin amidst Russia’s notable successes in Ukraine may instil fear among the Russian people, as it would undeniably affect the conflict’s outcome.

With the ongoing information warfare between Russia and the West, the elections play a crucial role in strengthening the president’s leadership and popular support, particularly in response to external criticism.

While the Western media may primarily be concerned with the population’s response to the vote, it is equally significant to consider the impact it will have on the internal power dynamics, especially considering recent changes that even led to an attempted coup.

At an international scale, Vladimir Putin’s re-election would ensure consistency in foreign policy and serve as a significant sign of support for both regional and international allies. If there were a sudden and unforeseen change in the Kremlin, it would have a significant impact on alliances and markets, leading to possible instability.

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Possible Future Outcomes

The re-election of Vladimir Putin could signify continuity in Russia’s leadership during a challenging period of confrontation with the West. This might further entrench Moscow’s resilience against economic and industrial sanctions.

However, if a new leader emerges, the political landscape could experience shifts, potentially influencing Russia’s stance on international conflicts and relations. The consequences of a new president on internal power dynamics in Russia are also uncertain, including whether the new head of state can effectively manage the various power groups.

As the elections unfold, the world will closely observe how Russia navigates its domestic challenges and international relationships in the post-election era.

For those with an interest in acquiring comprehensive insights into the socio-political system of Russia, we encourage you to reach out to SpecialEurasia by emailing We are ready to assist you in evaluating the possibility of acquiring a carefully crafted and customised report to meet your intelligence requirements.

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