Russian presidential elections in 2024 could be record high. They are going to spend 33 billion rubles on them.

The government has proposed to increase budget spending for the presidential elections in Russia in 2024 to 33 billion rubles. This is provided for by the bill on the federal budget for 2022-2024, which the government submitted to the State Duma on September 30. RBC drew attention to the document.

In the law on the federal budget for 2021-2023, adopted in December , 19.8 billion rubles were allocated for the preparation and conduct of the presidential elections. Now this amount is proposed to be increased by another 13.4 billion rubles, or by 56%. Thus, the total cost of the elections will reach 33.2 billion.

As noted by RBC, the elections in 2024 may become the most expensive in the new history of Russia in absolute terms. The 2018 presidential elections cost a little more than 14 billion rubles (out of the 17.7 billion budgeted), in 2012, 10.4 billion were spent on elections, in 2008 – 4.9 billion, in 2004 – 2.6 billion.

Lawyer Denis Panshin, in a conversation with RBC, drew attention to the fact that when determining the costs of elections, the budget includes the maximum amount of costs. He also suggested that the additional spending for the 2024 elections could be related to the  planned expansion of the e-voting format.

Digital technology isn’t cheap. The process of digitalization itself is very expensive, specialists in this market are also expensive. In addition, cybersecurity costs need to be budgeted.

Lawyer Sergei Yusov, former head of the Rostov region’s election commission, explained that the cost of the presidential election immediately takes into account a possible second round. But, according to him, it is impossible to analyze in detail exactly which items of expenditure have increased before the CEC draws up an estimate. It is published after the appointment of an election.

During the September elections, when a new State Duma was elected, among other things, remote electronic voting (DEG) was used in Moscow and six other regions.

In Moscow, where the DEG system was somewhat different, the results of electronic voting were announced only the next day, and more than half of the pro-government candidates won according to its results, although they lost according to the results of the paper one.

This raised suspicions of fraud. The candidates for the State Duma from the Communist Party of the Russian Federation and Yabloko demanded  to cancel the results of the DEG in Moscow. The Communist Party of the Russian Federation held two actions in Moscow against the election results , because of which the members and supporters of the party faced pressure from the security forces.

The public headquarters for the observation of elections in Moscow instructed a technical group to recount the votes of electronic voting in the elections to the State Duma in Moscow. Later, the headquarters said that no violations were found in the DEG.

(C)MEDUZA 2021

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