Russians head to the polls amid anger over economy and Covid
Ruling United Russia party polling at near-historic lows but likely to find a way to keep control of State Duma
Russians will head to the polls beginning Friday for parliamentary elections that could serve as a platform for popular anger over the economy, a crackdown on dissent and the government response to the coronavirus pandemic. But the ruling party United Russia is likely to find a way to maintain a stranglehold on its control of the State Duma.
While stifling political opposition and independent media, the Kremlin is trying to solve a simple maths problem: how can it prop up the numbers of United Russia, which is polling at near-historic lows, without provoking the kind of protests that broke out over widespread incidents of crude voter fraud in 2011.