Tag Archives: Polls

Kremlin’s Dubious Opinion Polls

If one is to believe VTsIOM, Russia’s state-run polling agency, public support for Vladimir Putin has reached “a new record height” and currently stands at 89.9 percent—a figure obligingly trumpeted by official television channels. “I am waiting for the day when VTsIOM puts Putin’s poll standing at 101 percent, and this, I think, will happen if not tomorrow, then the day after tomorrow,” remarked opposition politician Lev Shlosberg, commenting on the news.

Putin’s supposed “popularity” is the chief argument his apologists both inside and outside Russia use when responding to Kremlin critics. Too often, this “fact” is also accepted at face value—if with regret—by informed and unbiased commentators.

It should not be. Continue reading

Putin’s ratings and Ukraine

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Article by: Oleksandr Kurylenko

According to Russian journalist Alexander Sotnik, Putin is a professional liar who himself does not really believe that Ukrainians and Russians are “one people.” Sotnik shared these and other views on Putin and Russia with Gazeta.ua during a recent interview.

You spend a lot of time speaking with ordinary Russian citizens. How do you explain what appear to be Putin’s sky-high ratings by European standards?

In authoritarian countries opinion polls are the first to disappear. Then the opposition media goes away. The opinion polls are conducted according to orders, to support those in power. This does not mean that Putin does not have support. But it is different. Putin is supported by those who are fortunate. These are very different kinds of people — starting with officials and oligarchs and ending with law enforcement and FSB people. They represent about 34%. Those who simply don’t care are at 45%. These people are silent. And then there are up to 20% of those who under certain circumstances would be ready to protest in Continue reading