Media: Putin will run as 'People's Candidate' in Russia’s presidential elections
The number of Vladimir Putin's agents in the presidential elections in Russia will increase in 2018 in comparison with previous elections, due to the addition of regional leaders of public opinion, reported
Znak.com news website , citing sources in regional administrations, reported this.
The sources said that the Kremlin asked for lists of leaders of public opinion, including well-known and respected athletes, cultural figures and philanthropists. A special wish was that they lived not only in regional centers, but also in smaller cities.
"As a presidential candidate, Vladimir Putin, through his agents, will come literally to every person’s home. It will be necessary to organize a massive collection of instruments, not only in major cities. "The emphasis will be on Putin being a ‘people's candidate’, the only one of the politicians who will knock on every door in these elections," the source said.
Earlier, RBC news agency reported, citing a source close to the Kremlin, that regional administrations were asked to compile lists of Putin's proxies in the elections. A source in the leadership of one of the regions noted that they were asked to find not officials and deputies, but "recognizable leaders of public opinion."
According to RBC news agency, the request went to the Sakhalin, Tula, Kurgan and Yaroslavl regions, as well as to Dagestan.
The publication’s sources said that the compilation of the lists is the responsibility of the Vice-Governors of Internal Policy. They need to find from three to twenty people who can be possible trustees for Putin.
In the 2012 elections, Putin had 499 trustees, including football players Igor Akinfeev, Andrey Arshavin and Aleksandr Kerzhakov, singers Nadezhda Babkina, Nikolay Rastorguev and Stas Piekha, directors Nikita Mikhalkov and Fyodor Bondarchuk, fashion designer Valentin Yudashkin and others.
In August, it was reported that the controversial deputy of the State Duma and head of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, would run for the presidency of Russia for the sixth time.