EPRS Admin By / March 9, 2018

Results of Russian presidential elections opinion polls

Results of Russian presidential elections

Results of Russian presidential elections

Polls (see Figure 1) suggest that, once again, none of the other candidates will even come close to challenging Putin. More in doubt is the likely turnout. With a Putin victory all but guaranteed, many voters are likely to stay at home, thus repeating the results of the 2016 parliamentary election, in which a record low turnout of 47 % spoiled an otherwise overwhelming victory for Putin’s United Russia party.
According to Levada Centre polls carried out in November and December 2017, 58 % of respondents were either certain or likely to vote, whereas in August 2017 the figure was 57 %. Comparing the results of similar polls for previous elections with actual turnout, Levada Centre predicts that turnout in March 2018 will be 4-6 % lower than what polls suggest, giving a likely figure of just over 50 %.
By contrast, a February 2018 poll by Levada competitor, FOM, claims that 84 % of voters are certain (61 %) or likely (23 %) to take part in the election. However, Levada’s figures are more credible, as they fit better with previous trends – the post-Soviet record was 69 % in 1996, and turnout has been on a declining trend since then. Moreover, FOM gets part of its revenue from government contracts, making it vulnerable to political pressure.

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