Russian Opinion Polls Say Medvedev, Putin Drop

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – Support for Dmitry Medvedev fell slightly in Russia, according to a poll by the Yury Levada Analytical Center. 76 per cent of respondents approve of their president’s performance, down seven points since September.

In addition, 83 per cent of respondents approve of the way Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin is handling his job, down five points in a month.

Russian voters renewed the State Duma in December 2007. United Russia (YR)—whose candidate list was headed by Putin—secured 64.1 per cent of the vote and 315 of the legislature’s 450 seats. On that same month, Putin endorsed Dmitry Medvedev as a presidential candidate, and Medvedev said it would be of the “utmost importance” to have Putin as prime minister.

Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev speaks in his video blog ... 
Russia’s President Dmitry Medvedev speaks in his video blog about the main topics of his state of the nation address, at Gorki residence outside Moscow, November 2, 2008.(RIA Novosti/Kremlin/Mikhail Klimentyev/Reuters)

In March, Medvedev easily won Russia’s presidential election with 70.28 per cent of the vote. In May, Medvedev was sworn in as president. His nomination of Putin as prime minister was confirmed by the State Duma in a 392-56 vote.

On Oct. 27, Putin announced that Russia has no plans to isolate its economy from the rest of the world as a reaction to the global financial crisis, adding “Of course we must take today’s realities into account, but strategically, isolationism is not our choice. Our choice is building Russia further into the global economy. (…) We advocate consistently removing barriers to foreign trade and forming transparent rules of the game in the world economy and finance.”

Read the rest and see complete poll results:
http://www.angu
s-reid.com/polls/view/medvedev_
putin_drop_slightly_in_russia/

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Medvedev To Give “State of the Nation”

By Guy Faulconbridge, Reuters

The world financial crisis and the consequences of the war in Georgia will be the main topics of Russian President Dmitry Medvedev‘s first state of the nation speech this week, the Kremlin chief said on Sunday.

Speaking in a video blog posted on the http://www.kremlin.ru website, Medvedev said he would deliver the speech — a closely watched overview of Kremlin policy — on Wednesday.

“The crisis started in one of the biggest countries, the United States of America, and has unfortunately spread over the whole planet and every country is having to search for answers to it,” Medvedev said in the blog.

Russian equity and bond markets have tumbled over the past three months as investors dumped Russian assets on concerns the credit crisis could stall a 10-year economic boom and undermine economic stability.

Russian officials say there will be no rouble devaluation and that the state’s bailout packages will calm markets and help indebted Russian companies refinance their debts.

But investors are looking carefully to see what Medvedev will say about measures to tackle the crisis, which has hammered confidence in the domestic banking system and raised fears of nationalizations.

“Medvedev will certainly seek to deliver a message of calm for the domestic markets and to boost public confidence in both the rouble and the country’s banking system,” said Chris Weafer, a strategist at UralSib investment bank in Moscow.

“These are the two biggest priorities for his government right now,” Weafer said.

GEORGIA

Medvedev said a major part of the speech would address the consequences of the war in Georgia, which is seen by Kremlin officials as a turning point for relations with the West.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20081102/wl_
nm/us_russia_medvedev_1

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