Primaries Bulk of the coalition was on the verge of collapse

The primaries of the Democratic coalition, which should define a common list of opposition candidates for deputies of the state Duma in September 2016, was scheduled for 23-24 April.

However, the organizers of the primaries decided to postpone the vote for a month until may 28-29, said RBC head of the electoral Commission primaries, Vice-Chairman of PARNASSUS Konstantin Merzlikin.

Decided to extend the registration of candidates and voters, as well as to give registrants more time for debates and meetings with voters, he explained.

At the moment, according to Merzlikina, to participate in the primaries was registered about 75 candidates, and about 8 thousand voters. Now candidates will be able to register until the beginning of may, the voters — till the end of may.

According to a source familiar with the process of organizing the primaries, they are transferred because of voters less than wish the organizers.

“If the primaries will involve 15 thousand voters, it would be difficult to explain to their supporters that this is a representative sample,” — said the interlocutor of RBC. According to him, the organizers of the primaries “will think, why it happened and how to attract voters.”

Initially sought to bring to the primaries of 100 thousand people, 8 thousand is “not serious,” he added.

On the question of whether the results of the primaries to be cancelled in case of too low number of voters, Merzlikin said it in Demolitia have not yet discussed.

However, if the number of voters would be “clearly insignificant”, the legal value of such competition will be small, therefore, the legal effect of a vote “should be discussed”, he said.

“I think that voters should be at least not less than 50 thousand, but this is my personal opinion, the issue has not been discussed yet” — said Merzlikin.

If primaries are not held, it is unclear how to nominate candidates — there is no alternative mechanism for the nomination of candidates of the United opposition, which would not have caused a storm of conflicts and disputes inside the coalition, says the source of RBC familiar with the process of organizing the primaries.

The goal of early voting is to form a list of 12 people. The number of mandates which faction can win, breaking the barrier of 5%.

First place without competition is the chair of PARNAS Mikhail Kasyanov as the leader of the party, according to lists which the opposition candidates can be nominated in the state Duma without collecting signatures. He and three others will be included in the Federal part of the list. The remaining eight places will receive the heads of the regional groups that are most likely to succeed — in Moscow, St. Petersburg and other cities.

A candidate in the primaries can only be a member of Demolitia, which includes the PARNAS unregistered Party of progress Alexei Navalny, “Democratic choice” Party on 5 December, the libertarian party and movement “Solidarity”. The applicant must be at least 21 years and must not have restrictions for participation in elections.

Voters at the primaries will be all Russian citizens who share the principles of Demolitia and by the time the elections of the state Duma will have to vote.