Opposition

The survey took place between 20 and 23 February 2015 and was conducted throughout all of Russia in both urban and rural settings. The survey was carried out among 1600 people over the age of 18 in 134 localities of 46 of the country’s regions. The answer distribution is presented as percentages of the number of participants along with data from previous surveys. The statistical error of these studies does not exceed 3.4%.

IN YOUR OPINION, IS THERE CURRENTLY POLITICAL OPPOSITION TO AUTHORITY IN RUSSIA?

 

May

04

July

05

June

06

June

07

July

08

July

09

July

11

July

12

May

14

Feb

15

Definitely yes

18

14

11

20

15

11

16

21

10

20

Probably yes

24

27

26

33

31

28

35

45

40

46

Probably not

25

22

27

14

22

26

33

18

24

14

Definitely not

13

13

12

7

13

12

14

6

9

6

It is difficult to say

20

24

24

25

19

22

2

11

17

14

IN YOUR OPINION, IS THERE CURRENTLY A NEED FOR POLITICAL OPPOSITION TO AUTHORITY IN RUSSIA?

 

May

04

July

05

June

06

June

07

July

08

July

09

July

10

July

11

July

12

May

14

Feb

15

Definitely yes

32

34

27

25

27

25

23

27

29

18

18

Probably yes

29

30

29

34

34

32

44

45

43

39

40

Probably not

12

9

14

9

14

15

12

19

10

19

16

Definitely not

5

5

6

5

7

5

4

7

3

4

6

It is difficult to say

22

23

24

27

17

24

16

2

15

20

20

WHY, IN YOUR OPINION, DOES RUSSIA NEED OPPOSITION? (In % of respondents who answered that Russia currently needs opposition; multiple answers given)

 

Oct. 00

Oct. 10

Feb. 15

To keep the authority under control of society/to prevent authorities from getting out of control

47

53

42

To support dialogue between authorities and society

19

27

29

To ensure that society has a choice between the programs of authorities and the opposition

30

27

27

To ensure democratic elections and change of power (today’s opposition could be tomorrow’s authorities)

22

18

19

To allow for the consideration of minority interests in government decisions

13

20

16

Other

2

3

1

It is difficult to say

5

3

2

WHY, IN YOUR OPINION, DOES RUSSIA NOT NEED OPPOSITION? (In % of respondents who answered that Russia currently needs opposition; multiple answers given)

 

Oct. 00

Oct. 10

Feb. 15

In these difficult times, we should not waste society’s strength on disputes and feuds

33

31

30

The problems that Russia is facing can only be solved by one strong hand

23

27

23

Putin’s politics reflect the interests of the general public

9

18

17

Opposition prevents Putin from effectively solving our problems

49

17

15

Self-serving interests/low moral character of opposition leaders

6

14

10

Other

2

3

5

It is difficult to say

6

10

10

IN GENERAL, DO YOU SYMPATHISIZE OR NOT WITH LEADERS OF THE “UNSYSTEMIC OPPOSITION,” INCLUDING MIKHAIL KASYANOV, BORIS NEMTSOV, VLADIMIR RYZHKOV, AND ALEKSEI NAVALNY?

 

Dec. 11

Jan. 12

Feb. 15

Definitely yes

2

3

 3

Probably yes

10

12

 12

Probably not

31

33

 37

Definitely not

28

33

 31

It is difficult to say

28

19

 18

WHAT ARE YOUR FEELINGS TOWARDS MIKHAIL KHODORKOVSKY?*(one answer)

 

Aug.

05

Sept.

05

Dec.

05

Aug.

06

Oct.

08

Oct.

12

Jan.

15

Respect

3

3

5

2

1

4

3

Sympathy**

5

5

7

5

6

10

3

I can’t say anything bad about him

11

10

13

11

10

13

8

Neutral, indifferent

38

38

41

50

40

48

40

I can’t say anything good about him

15

16

8

11

10

7

14

Irritation

8

7

6

4

3

2

8

Dislike

8

8

8

4

4

2

8

It is difficult to say

14

12

13

14

27

16

17

 *The survey was conducted from 23 – 26 January 2015 

** Until January 2015 this answer was listed as “empathy”

SOME PEOPLE BELIVE THAT STREET RALLIES AND DEMONSTRATIONS ARE A PART OF DEMOCRATIC EXPRESSION FOR CITIZENS AND THAT AUTHORITIES SHOULD NOT DENY THESE RIGHTS. OTHERS BELIEVE THAT STREET RALLIES AND DEMONSTRATIONS ARE AN INSTRUMENT TO DESTABILIZE ORDER IN THE COUNTRY AND THAT THEY SHOULD BE PROHIBITED. WITH WHICH OF THESE OPINIONS DO YOU AGREE?

 

May 08

Apr. 10

Apr. 11

June 12

Oct. 12

July 13

Feb. 15

Street rallies and demonstrations are a part of democratic expression for citizens to achieve their goals, and authorities should not deny these rights prohibit them

55

59

54

51

48

54

54

If street rallies and demonstrations disturb social order and act as a tool for destabilization, then authorities should prohibit them

32

27

35

37

39

37

34

It is difficult to say

12

14

11

13

13

9

12

FROM THE FOLLOWING LIST OF DEMANDS, WHICH DO YOU BELIEVE ARE MOST IMPORTANT AND WOULD BE WILLING TO SUPPORT? (respondents named no more than five answers)

Enact legislation against illicit benefiting by government officials

32

Ensure fair and free elections

30

End military action vis-à-vis Ukraine

23

Put corrupt officials from Putin’s inner circle on trial

19

Reduce funding for state-owned companies (Rosneft, VEB, VTB, Gazprombank, etc.)

15

Return the investment part of state pensions

15

Redistribution of funding in favor of regional and local authorities

14

Ensure independence of the judiciary system from other branches of government

12

Allow opposition parties and candidates to participate in elections

10

Cancel Russia’s countersanctions on food

10

Reduce funding for the army and police and redirect the funding towards healthcare and education

9

End the information war against the West and Ukraine

5

End censorship in the media

5

Decentralization of power

2

Release of all political prisoners

2

There is not a single demand in this list that I would be willing to support

18

It is difficult to say

10

Translated by Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (formerly  Monterey Institute of International Studies).