State Duma Passes Law Allowing Putin to Run for President Again

Russia’s State Duma (the lower house of parliament) has passed the third reading of a bill allowing Vladimir Putin to run for president again, TASS reports.

According to one of the amended provisions of the Russian Constitution, presidential term limits apply to the incumbent head of state without regard to his previous terms in office. That said, it makes Vladimir Putin eligible for two more presidential terms.

State Duma members Pavel Krashenninnikov and Olga Sevastyanova, together with Federation Council (the upper house of parliament) member Andrei Klishas, submitted the bill to the lower house in November 2020.

The document says that Russian citizens over the age of 35 are eligible to seek the nation’s highest office provided that they have lived in Russia continuously for at least 25 years and have never had foreign citizenship or overseas residency permits. However, the rule does not apply to Russians “who used to be citizens of a country, which was or whose part was made part of Russia in accordance with federal constitutional law.”

The legislation also lays out the age requirements for the chairperson of the Russian Central Election Commission. Russian citizens must be at least 30 years old to seek the position.

The document also clarifies the law on parliamentary elections and bans people convicted of low/mid-level felonies from running for parliament for five years after they either serve out their sentence or are cleared of their criminal record.