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GolosUralintheframeworkofthemovementGolosadvocatingfortheprotectionofvoters

rights
TheFinalGolosStatementontheOutcomesoftheCivicObservation
oftheElectionheldon14September2014
Moscow,15September2014
TableofContents
1. Introduction
2. ConclusionsandRecommendations
3. Composition of the Election Commission and the Accessibility of the Information on Their
Activities
4. Legal Characteristics of the Election Held on 14 September 2014 and the Overall Outcomes in
RespecttotheRegistrationofCandidates
5. ThePeculiaritiesoftheElectionCampaign
6. EarlyVoting
7. ElectionDay

1.Introduction
The Interregional Public Foundation for the development of the civil society GolosUral, within the
framework of the Golos (hereinafter Golos) movement advocating for the protection of voters rights,
implemented the project It is Time for Fair Elections: Increasing public trust in the Elections by developing
a system of a civic monitoring of voters rights and facilitation of platforms for a dialogue. It carried out
an independent longterm and shortterm election observation (civilian monitoring). The elections were
heldontheSingleVotingDayon14September2014.
Trained longterm observers, as well as the correspondents of the newspaper Civic Voice and
activistsconductedtheobservation.
Golos refers to the information provided by its representatives in the regions, media, the official
websites of election commissions and governmental institutions, expert interviews with the representatives
of political parties, members of the election commissions, political researches, NGO leaders, candidates, as
wellasthecitizensreportsontheelectoralprocessesandincidentsduringtheongoingelectioncampaign.
On 14 September, Golos carried out a civic monitoring of voting procedures, vote counting at the
polling stations and the tabulation of the election results in the higherlevel election commissions in 21
regions: Altai, Krasnodar, Stavropol, Astrakhan, Volgograd, Voronezh, Ivanov, Irkutsk, Kirov, Kurgan,
Lipetsk, Moscow, Nidzhegorodskaya, Novosibirsk, Orlov, Samara, Tver, Chelyabinsk Oblasts, the Altai
Republic, Bashkortostan and Moscow city. In Tyumen region, due to the pressure induced by the law
enforcement agencies, the Golos coordinator and volunteers had to give up the observation on election
day for the security reasons. As an organization, which is guided by the international election observation
standards, Golos strictly preserves its political neutrality as one of the basic preconditions of an
independentandimpartialobservation.
On 14 September 2014, the elections and referendums were held in 5322 constituencies, including
the elections of 30 Governors, the elections to 12 regional parliaments, the elections of the 3 heads of the
administrative regional centers, and the elections to 19 representative bodies of the regional administrative
centers. Moreover, the elections of heads were held in 1593 municipal entities, and the elections to the
main representative bodies in 3125. Thus, the most important elections (Regional Government Elections
and the Elections to the Local authorities of regional centers) were held in 49 regions of Russia, including
Moscow the elections to the Moscow city Duma, St. Petersburg Gubernatorial Election, and the
municipalelectionsin106constituencies.
2.ConclusionsandRecommendations
In overall, the 2014 election campaign was less advanced in respect to the principles of free, fair
and competitive election. The requirement to collect and submit the predetermined number of signatures
was the main obstruction to hold the competitive election what reduced the number of independent
candidates as well as the candidates nominated by the political parties. It could be related to the notorious
municipal filter in the gubernatorial election. Due to the lack of intrigue, a large number of voters lost an
interestandtrustintheelection.
It seems that any amendments to the electoral legislation at the federal and regional levels should be
adopted only after being widely discussed in public and should be enforced in a reasonable time frame in
respecttotheelectionparticipants(i.e.,nolaterthansixmonthsbeforetheelectionday).
The procedure of collecting signatures requires thorough review and modification. The requirement
to collect 3% of signatures of constituency voters seems to be overly inflated and is actually a prohibitory
threshold preventing candidates from running for the election if they do not obtain considerable financial,
organizational,andadministrativeresources.
The deliberate efforts should be allocated in order to achieve the greater information transparency
regarding the activities of election commissions. The information resources of the election commissions
must fully comply with the principles and the legal provisions on the duties of federal and municipal
authoritiesinrespecttoinformationdissemination,aswellastheirworkwithcitizens.
One of the possible preconditions for a preservation of a competitive and fair election and an
increase of trust in it, could be the different approach towards the composition of election commissions of
the federal constituent territories, the territorial election commissions, and the municipal commissions by
strengthening the role of political parties, not only the parliamentary ones, and respectively, by reducing
thecontrolovertheactivitiesofregionaladministrativecommissions.
One of the peculiarities of the 2014 elections was the reintroduction of early voting. In many
regions, the fraudulent activities were reported when administrativelydependent voters were forced to
cast their vote on early voting days it violated the principle of free election. This method empowered
unfair candidates to safeguard a competitive advantage promising a victory already before the election
day. Golos recommends to carefully analyze the irregularities and violations of the early voting procedures
aswellastodevelopmechanismsinordertoprecludefromthemduringthenextelection.
The particular attention should be paid to the provocative behavior of the Central Election
Committee (CEC), which resulted in the actual observation failure in numerous Russian regions, which
was carried out by the most professional civic observers the correspondents of the newspaper Civic
Voice. The press service of the CEC published a press release which was structured in such a way that
it actually recommended the subordinate election commissions to prevent the correspondents of Civic
Voice" from entering the polling stations since 12 September. In general, the instructions were violating the
law and did not contain any reference to any provisions legitimizing the decision. It just referred to the fact
the presence of foreign agents at polling stations could cause the discretization of observers as such, as
well destabilization of a democratic process regarding the formation of public authorities. As a result, on
the polling day, all the correspondents from the Civic Voice were illegitimately expelled in Chelyabinsk,
Samara Oblast and the Republic of Bashkortostan, and a considerable number of correspondents were
prevented from entering polling stations in Nizhny Novgorod and Moscow Oblasts. In fact, the state body,
obliged to respect the law during the election period, have chosen the way of deliberate fraud by inciting
and provoking the lower level commissions to violate the law. As respects some of the regional election
commissions in other regions, the overwhelming majority of lower level commissions did not succumb to
thisprovocation.
In regions, the correspondents of the Civic Voice and other observers reported a catastrophically
low number of observers present at polling stations in some of them there were no observes at all. First of
all, it was related to the low level of competition and a lack of intrigue in most of the election. The
candidates, who did not have a potential chance of winning did not invest resources in election observation,
moreover the independent civic observers volunteers were demotivated to observe election as there was
no competition implied. Therefore, the election commissions were not under the civic observance.
However, even those few civic observers who were present at the polling stations faced the violations of
their rights: the restriction of the movement at the polling station, the ban on photography and video
shooting.
In 2014, there were 776 cases of violations reported to Golos during the election campaign and the
polling day on 14 September what exceeds the number of cases (747) reported in 2013 regarding the


election held on 8 September that year. As the observers interest in monitoring the election held on 14

Septemberwaslow,itwascomplicatedtoprepareanexhaustivelistofviolationsfromalltheregions.
Despite the numerous violations of electoral laws on election day, Golos paid attention to the fact
that the method applied in order to obstruct the expression of voters will was shifted to the earlier stages
of the election campaign the stage of nomination and registration of partylists and candidates, when the
process of registration of candidates was turned into the verification of candidates lists by the
administrative bodies. The suppression of competition, the use of manipulative technologies, and the
obstructions to observation suggest that there were significant violations of the legal provisions and
principles of the Russian and International law during the 2014 election. It discredits the concept of
Democracyintheeyesofageneralpublicandunderminesthelegitimacyoftheelectedbodies.
3. Composition of Election Commissions and Accessibility of the Information on Their
Activities
The current election was organized by the election commissions which were established prior to the
introduction of the restrictive political reforms the precinct election commissions as permanently
established bodies in early 2013 will keep their office for 5 years. As a result it prevents new political
parties from delegating members to the regional commissions. Formally all the parliamentary parties kept
the privileges, though under the existing law, each party is entitled to nominate one commission member.
The law entitles public associations to nominate their representatives to the ECs, but the procedures of
nomination of such EC members are not explicitly provisioned in a law, suggesting that the candidates of
public associations can arbitrarily be approved or not. However, the analysis of the personnel of the
ECCTF reveals that actually the members of United Russia dominate in most of them, though officially
they were nominated by nongovernmental organizations, local representative bodies and other
stakeholderswhichareentitledtonominatecandidates.
The observation suggests that the individuals in some respect related with the current government
can mostly affect the activities of election commissions. Despite the fact that the members of a federal
and local governments cannot occupy more than onehalf of the total number of members on the election
commissions, at different levels, the delegation of committee duties to persons holding the position in
federal and municipal electoral bodies, as well as the heads of budgetary institutions could influence the
election commissions which are directly dependent on the authorities. The majority of EC members are
dependent on the administration. United Russia dominates among the party representatives, what
leads to the conclusion that in most of the cases a commission does not dare to take decisions against the
interestsofthecandidatessupportedbythecurrentgovernment,hencetheviolationsareobvious.
The analysis of the composition of election commissions of the federal constituent territories leads to
the conclusion that the legally provisioned principles and methods regarding their composition do not
safeguard their independence from the government, especially from the administration and the heads of
the regional institutions, and moreover their political neutrality. It could be related to the fact that the
politicalpartiesdonotplayamajorroleinrespecttotheactivitiesoftheelectioncommissions.
The registration of candidates for the gubernatorial election and respectively the lists of candidates
for regional parliaments at the ECCTF, reaffirms that the number of registration denials on the basis of
lowquality documents or missing information about the candidates had minor effect and no significant
impact on the competitiveness of the election. The main barrier during the registration of candidates for
theregionalelectionwasthesignaturesthreshold,thenotorioussocalledmunicipalfilter.
The opposite situation arose at the level of TEC and ECME, which are the commissions playing the
major role in the organization of the local elections. The information resources barely contribute to greater
accessibility of information about the activities of the election commissions and the services provided to the
citizens by the commissions acting as the federal and municipal authorities. Moreover, it scarcely affects
the performance of the commissions in regard to protection of citizens' electoral rights. For instance, in the
majority of the information resources (web sites, profiles) of TEC and ECME (if any) there are no lists of
documents and its templates required for the registration of candidates and no indications of deadlines for
accomplishing certain actions during the election campaign. Moreover, the presence of any guidelines and
instructions is extremely rare. For example, in St. Petersburg the information resources of the
municipalities and EC suggest that they almost do not obtain any information about the ongoing election
processesandtheactivitiesofthemunicipalelectioncommissions.
Thus, in most of the constituent territories of Russian Federation there was obviously no adequate
and consistent information on TEC and ECME activities and on the local election predetermined for the
candidatesandvoters.
The information resources obtained by the election commissions also suggest that the
implementation of duties of the regional election commissions in respect to the citizens, their associations,
and, moreover, to the commissions at the lower levels, as well as the dissemination of information on their
dutiesdonotfullycomplywiththecurrentlegalprovisions(No.59FZ,No.8FZ).
In a contemporary information society, while information technologies are rapidly developing, the
poor information resources of a sufficiently large number of ECs are a tangible obstruction in building a
constructiveinteractionbetweenthecommissionsandthevoters.
4. Legal Characteristics of the Election Held on 14 September 2014 and the Overall
OutcomesinRespecttotheRegistrationofCandidates
The Year 2014 could be marked by a new turn in the state electoral politics. In total, 11
amendments to the Federal Law No. 67 FZ On Basic Guarantees of Electoral Rights and the Rights of
Citizens of the Russian Federation to participate in the referendum were adopted since the previous
election day. Moreover, the regional laws were amended as well. However, the amendments were often
adopted at the last moment, just one or two months before the start of the election campaign. Due to such
a practice, it was impossible to avoid a negative impact on the quality of preparatory electoral activities of
the election commissions at the different levels, as well as of the participants the candidates and the lists
ofcandidates.
A number of legislative amendments had a fundamental political character, therefore the election
campaign reflects the fact that they were purposively directed to induce the control imposed by the
administrative bodies over the electoral processes and consequently to invoke the less competitive election.
It was caused by the successful results of a number of new candidates and political parties in the 2013
electionandtheoutflowofrepresentativesofregionalandlocalelitesfromtheoldprosystemicparties.
This triggered the desire to reduce the impact of any parties through the reduction of the proportion
of deputies elected under the proportional representation system in elections of all levels (this was quickly
used in the Moscow and St. Petersburg elections). In fact, the privileged position of the old parties was
reinforced (United Russia, the Communist Party, A Just Russia and the Liberal Democratic Party) by
simultaneously creating difficulties in the registration of new political parties (the requirement to collect
voters signatures in support of a party list was returned). The prosystemic parties were not required to
collect signatures for registering party lists and candidates, while all the rest were obliged to collect 3% of
signatures of constituency voters. As a result, in regard to the 2014 election formally the prosystemic
partieswereinabetterpositionthanin2013.
The threshold inflated to 3% of signatures of constituency voters for registering candidates is the
most stringent requirement regarding the registration of candidates in the present history of the country.
Election campaign in Moscow and other regions of Russian Federation demonstrated that the requirement
implies prohibition, especially taking into account a very short period of time for the procedure of carrying
outsignaturesatthetimeofthesummerholidays.
Legislative and other traditional administrative and formally legal measures, applied for the
registration of candidates, led to a decline in the number of parties that had nominated their lists, as well as
the number of candidates in majority districts. Many novel political parties discontinued the nomination of
theircandidates,orminimizedit.
TheLawNo.95FZasofMay5,2014resumedtheuseofanabsenteeballotonearlyvoting.
As many low competition election campaigns have demonstrated, the absence of any intrigue,
especially in the gubernatorial election, and the reintroduction of early voting led to an administrative
pressure on voters, to the mass, as a rule, administratively organized voting, aiming to increase their
turnout.
In 2014 election, all previously mentioned negative trends in respect to the application of a socalled
municipal filter have remained. In 2012 2014, none of the proposals for changing the system in order to
democratize it have been implemented. In such circumstances, the current heads of administration actually
do allocate their own competitors. Almost everywhere, where the candidates could actually achieve
significant electoral support, they were withdrawn from the election under various reasons (St. Petersburg,
Bashkortostan,RepublicofAltai,OrenburgandOrlovskayaOblast).
On the one hand, the 2014 election campaign could be characterized by the scandals implicated by
the obstructions to collect signatures of municipal deputies in favor of more or less independent candidates.
On the other hand, the technology was applied, which selected all the deputies of the region and distributed
their signatures among the right candidates. The scandals concerning the signatures of deputies were
reported in the Orlovskaya Oblast, Altai Krai, Stavropol Krai, Altai Republic, St. Petersburg,
Bashkortostan and other regions. Thus, registration of candidates depends on the good will of regional
administration. In reality the municipal filter does not actually perform its originally intended function, i.e.
itisnotthefilteritself.Itsapplicationisonlythelegitimizationofpreviouslyadoptedpoliticaldecision.
One more peculiarity of the 2014 election campaign was the withdrawal of a number of candidates
nominated by their political parties. The sudden decisions and the lack of clear justification suggest that
these decisions were made due to the political will and the informal pressure on the leadership of these
parties.
This year the total dropout rate of nominated and registered candidates to regional heads was 33%.
As a result, almost universally the most powerful competitors of the current heads of regions were
dismissed and the election had largely lost the intrigue. This fact actually turned the election of governors,
into a kind of "referendums on trust" to acting heads, i.e. distorted the essence of an electoral procedure.
Another negative consequence of the use of a municipal filter was the lack of interest of the majority of
voters. The requirement concerning the signatures is the major and the most significant barrier to
candidates. New signature collection requirements for the majority of parties led to the decline in the
number of parties participating in the election compared with 2013. The dropout of party lists at the stage
of notarization and registration has also increased from 8.5% to 20%. Thus, 59 out of 60 nominated party
lists which were exempted from some requirements in respect to registration were registered (the
partylist RODP Yabloko in KarachayCherkessia was refused to notarization), and 35 out of 58
nominated partylists obtaining no privileges were registered (the dropout in this category party lists was
40%). As for the failure to register, they were all related to the verification of signatures. The less intense
competition among independent candidate became more prominent. The difference in dropout was: among
the privileged parties the dropout was only 4%, among the rest 75%, among the independent candidates
55%.
The dropout of candidates representing parties having no privileges was the highest in Volgograd
Oblast (95%), in the Republic of Mari El (92%) and the Republic of Tatarstan (90%), the dropout of
independentcandidatesinVolgogradOblast(91%)andtheTulaOblast(83%).
There was a likewise situation in respect to the election of representative bodies to the regional
governmentadministrativecentres.
Gubernatorial and municipal elections in St. Petersburg, along with elections to the Moscow City
Duma,almostlosttheintrigueatthestageoftheregistrationofcandidates.
Municipal election in 106 constituencies is held simultaneously with gubernatorial election in St.
Petersburg. In these elections the doors were shut to many opposition candidates. In gubernatorial
election they failed to overcome the municipal filter, and in the municipal election they were not able
even to enter the premises of election commissions in order to submit registration documents. In fact,
novel technologies of nonadmission of opposition candidates to the elections were used in St. Petersburg:
municipality staff was hiding the location of the district election commissions and their working hours, as
well as information on the deadlines of electoral procedures. They were suddenly closing their offices,
hiding forms and lists of documents, and exposing fake queues preventing people from entering the
premises of election commissions. Moreover, after the submission of documents election commissions
refused to register candidates on a number of farfetched pretexts. Approximate statistics is as follows:
Just Russia nominated 918 candidates, 400 of whom either had failed to submit the documents or had
been denied registration. Yabloko nominated 208 candidates, 110 of whom had managed to register their
candidacy.
Electoral system dramatically changed in the Moscow Election, where the constituencies were
formed impermissibly late and practically prohibitive barrier to the collection of signatures was introduced.
Just before the election race the campaign My Moscow (socalled primaries) was carried out, which
was strongly supported by the Moscow administration for campaigning purposes. Huge administrative
resources were allocated for the primaries such as state and municipal media, public service agencies,
and urban outdoor advertisements. All this cast doubts on the fairness and competitiveness of the election
campaigntothe6thMoscowCity Duma.
5.ThePeculiaritiesoftheElectionCampaign
Due to the fact that campaigning was carried out practically at the period of the summer holidays,
the real campaign of 2014 commenced long before the announcement of the elections in MayApril. After
the registration of the main candidates and non admission of the most prominent competitors to the
election,thelevelofcampaigningactivitysignificantlydroppedinJuly(andpartlyinAugust).
At the same time, it firstly discouraged the supporters of those candidates and parties, who were
denied during the registration the opposition to vote in the election. In such circumstances, the
authorities actually counted on the low turnout, where the majority of voters were those depending on the
administrativeauthorities.
In general, the meetings of the regional heads with the President of Russian Federation became an
important element of the election campaigns (in some cases the President and/or the chairman of the
Government of Russian Federation visited regions). In total, from April to August V. Putin met with 27 out
of30governors,wherethemunicipalheadelectionwasheldon14September.
Again we can talk about the application of various masking technologies the use of various
nonpartisan campaigning brands and initiatives, distracting the attention from the image of specific parties
and the negative issues related to it (first of all, the progovernment party). In this election it was
significant that the candidates representing different parties (with the exception, perhaps, of the
CommunistParty)inmanycasesdidnotproclaimtheirpartyaffiliation.
The number of vibrant and creative campaigns has decreased due to the denial of registration of
popular candidates. The use of online resources implicates a traditional character of this campaign: the
launch of candidates websites and/or use of previously obtained online resources (in particular, the party
offices). Often special websites on particular projects or initiatives are launched (e.g., the website of civil
initiative My Moscow), banner advertising is almost never used on the Internet there are almost no short
videosofviraladvertising.
The Ukraine crisis has had an undeniable impact on the course of the campaign: the topic is always
depicted at the public statements of all the major political parties, as well widely presented on the official
websites of United Russia, the Communist Party, Just Russia, the Liberal Democratic Party, Rodina
andotherparties.
At the same time, apart from the official websites of political parties, indicating their official position,
in the other campaigning material printed materials, large advertising stands this topic is reflected only
fractionallyanditisdominatedbythelocalandgeneralsocialissues.
6.EarlyVoting
As it was already mentioned before, the restoration of the early voting had extremely negative
consequences. This procedure allows taking part in the election to a large number of those voters, who for
objective reasons will not be able to come to the polling station on a Single Voting Day. Unfortunately,
concerns, expressed by experts, that early voting can be used aiming to compel voters to vote with the
intention to increase the voter turnout in the election, were fully justified in almost all the regions, where
elections were held. This was confirmed by the reports in the media as well as by the messages on the
Map of Violations (more than 90 messages received). However, in some cases, voters who had every
reasontovoteearlyweredeniedthisopportunity.
Massive early voting has been noted in the Samara Oblast, St. Petersburg, Chelyabinsk Oblast, the
Altai Krai, Tatarstan, etc. Data on the number of early voters were often hidden from the media and
members of election commissions with an advisory vote. Some reports showed that a number of
candidatesusedtheearlyvotingtobribevoters.
On the election day, some voters were complaining that someone had already illegally voted instead
of them during the early voting. If no measures are taken in order to prevent this kind of abuse, the
successful practice of mobilized early voting may adversely affect the following federal, regional and
municipalelections.
7.ElectionDay
Election (14 September 2014) observation results indicate the continuation of the use of illegal
technologies on the Election Day. First of all, it refers to the Moscow, Chelyabinsk and Samara Oblasts
and St. Petersburg. Despite the large number of reports from the Moscow city (262), most of the
violationscarriedaproceduralcharacter.
Predictability of the outcomes of the elections due to the lack of real competition lead to reduced
voters interest in the election, which was reflected in the decrease of turnout. And this was despite the
significant measures taken by the administration in order to attract voters to the polling stations: forced
voting, more intense homebased voting of socially vulnerable groups of citizens, the sale of discounted
food,busingofvoters,SMSmessagescallingtovote,etc.
For example, low competition at the Moscow election, and as a consequence a little interest of
voters in this election, was reflected in the use of diverse technologies to increase the turnout. The election
was marked by numerous cases of telephone calls to voters on behalf of the candidates to the Moscow
City Duma, either under the guise of sociological research with a call to come to vote or with a hidden
campaigning. A number of voters contacted the hotline of Golos reporting the cases of telephone calls and
asking the same question where did the callers get their phone numbers from. Moreover, numerous
cases of forced voting when people were ordered to vote at work have been reported. Cases of illegal
marks in special tables of serial numbers of voters from the list of voters, who had already taken part in
the voting, also have been reported. One case of dissemination of coupons to the pupils, whose parents
had already voted, at school 937, where the PEC 1921 was located, has been reported. The class with
thehighestnumberofcouponsreceivedabonus.
Despite almost predictable results of the elections, in some regions the scale of violations was very high.
During the election campaign, on the election day and during vote counting on September 1415 the hotline
88003333350 and a Map of Violations received about 850 reports on violations. This is more than the
number of messages received on the previous Single Voting Day (750 messages received on 8 September
2013), and almost the same as was received on 14 October 2012. Unlike the previous Single Voting Days,
more messages this year were coming from voters, and not from observers and candidates, as it was
before.
Reports on violations on the election day were received from 43 regions. The greatest number of reports
on violations came from the Moscow city (262), the Moscow Oblast (123), the Samara Oblast (86) and St.
Petersburg(54).
It should be noted that the spectrum of violations on the election day September 14 has changed compared
to the previous elections on the Single Voting Day, as a new set of violations related to early voting
emerged101reportsreceived.Moreover,thefollowingtypesofviolationshavebeenobserved:
1. BallotBoxStuffing
2. Busing,BribingofVotersand'Carousels'
3. ViolationsduringVotingOutsidethePollingStation
4. IllegalCampaigning
5. ViolationofVotingOrganizationProcedures
6. ViolationofElectoralRights,PressureatWork
7. ViolationofPublicControllers'Rights
8. ViolationsduringtheVoteCountandTabulation.

Part of the reports received by Golos are available on the Map of Violations: www.kartanarusheniy.org.
Belowsomeoftheexposedviolationsareprovided.

BallotBoxStuffing
In most of the cases, reports about ballotbox stuffing were coming from the Moscow Oblast. Both single
and multiple cases of ballotbox stuffing have been reported. Balashikha city in the Moscow Oblast
became the leader regarding the number of reports: PECs 24, 28, 29, 72 and 76. Moreover, observer
Andrey Skorokhodin, who reported one of the ballotbox stuffing cases in Balashikha, was attacked in the
TEC by the member of election commission with an advisory capacity, and then was hospitalized with
injuries.
In Zhukovsky city ballotbox stuffing has been reported in PECs 621 and 652, in Koroliov city in PEC
1110. Ballotbox stuffing attempts were prevented in Zhukovsky city in PEC 623 and Odincovo city in
PEC 1966. In the Astrakhan Oblast in the Kamyzyakskiy district, VolgoKaspisky village ballotbox
stuffing has been reported in PEC 1030. Moreover, ballotbox stuffing has been observed in Ufa city in
PEC308.

Busing,BribingofVotersand'Carousels'
Duringtheelectiondaybribingofvotershasbeenreported.
On the eve of the election day, as well as on the polling day in the Noginskiy district of the Moscow Oblast
(PEC1915),acarwascarryingpeopletovoteforcandidateR.Maliukovfor500rubles.
On September 13 in the Pervomaiskiy district, Irkutsk, police officers detained two men for bribing voters.
Observers of one of the candidates reported that Honda car with the license plate n672nn region 38 was
carrying voters to the PECs 703 and 704 (high school 6). Observers notified the police officer, who
was on duty at the polling station, and he in turn called patrol service and traffic police. Upon arrival
officers detained the offenders: both those who paid money for votes, and voters, who received a
monetary reward for their votes. All those, who participated in the violation, were delivered to the police
station.
Two weeks before the election in the 6
th
district of Irkutsk, PEC 569, voters in their mailboxes found
leaflets with a phone number of the person who pays money for voting for Gregory Reznikov. The more
people one can bring, the more one will earn. On Saturday, the day before the elections, a bus was driving
around the district, bringing people to the early voting. On the election day the same bus also gathered
people and brought them to the high school 30, where the PEC was located. People were coming in,
voting, making photo shoots of ballot papers inside the voting booth, getting back to the bus, showing the
photoandfinallyreceiving500rubles.
In the Republic of Mari El, Krasnogorosky village, the Zvenigovsky district, PEC 242, the Chairman of the
election commission confused observers, approached the wrong observer from the Communist Party
insteadoftheUnitedRussiaandaskedwhentheywillstartbringingvoterswithbuses.

ViolationsduringVotingOutsidethePollingStation
Technology of increasing the number of voters outside the polling station (socalled homebased voting) is
widely used not only to increase voter turnout, but also to gain extra votes for the necessary candidate or
party. A large number of violations were related, as a rule, to the voluntary participation of voters in this
kind of voting, and noncompliance with the rules of registries of homebased voting, as well as procedures
forthepreparationandcarryingoutthedepartureofcommissionsmemberstothevoting.
For instance, in Moscow, PEC 2856 members of the election commission did not sign in the journal for the
number of ballot papers received before homebased voting. In PEC 443 the forms, which were brought
by the members of the election commissions to mobile voting, had extraneous marks. According to the
Chairman, the marks were made by social workers. In the Nizhny Novgorod city, PEC 2561 the election
commission picked 1000 ballot papers for the mobile voting in the hospital and conducted voting process
withoutvoterslist.
The most common violation was the absence of the registry for homebased voting, which is usually filled
in by social workers. In Moscow, PEC 2120 18 applications for homebased voting have not been signed
by the election commission. All of them were brought (and written) by social workers. On the eve of the
election day, in the 18th electoral district in Moscow, anonymous persons were calling to the elderly, urging
them to stay at home on September 14, some of them were even told the exact time, when the mobile
voting will take place. In Ivanovo, PEC 7273 the register of voters for the mobile voting had not been
concluded before the election, information had been recorded in different notebooks, the Chairman of the
commissionannouncedthatthegeneralregisterwillbeconcludedbythefactofvoting.

IllegalCampaigning
Reports of illegal campaigning on the election day have been received. First of all, the violation of the
prohibition of campaigning at a distance closer than 50 meters from the building where the polling station is
located, has been observed. For instance, in the Vladimirskaya Oblast, PEC 171 a car with agitation
materials of the candidate Gorbachev was closer than 50 meters from the entrance to the polling station.
In the Kaliningrad Oblast, PEC 535 the candidate from the Communist Party, Ekaterina Mikhalyuk and
her representative, member of the election commission with an advisory capacity, Ryabcev, noted that
there was a poster with the leader of the local organization of the United Russia and decided that it was
campaigning for one of the parties. The election commission covered the poster with paper. Half an hour
later (at 09:30) the head of the local organization of the United Russia, Lyutarevich arrived with the head
of the municipality and opened the poster. The police have been called to conclude the protocol. In St.
Petersburg, PEC 171 when leaving the polling station a voter noticed a bunch of newspapers from the
candidateoftheUnitedRussia,whichwerelocatedrightinthebuilding.
A separate group of violations concerning the annoying phone calls to voters with illegal invitations to vote
for particular candidates can be distinguished. For example, in Moscow, PEC 823 on September 13
anonymous person called after 7 p.m. and said, remember that elections will be held tomorrow, and you
can vote for the candidates, for example, the candidate Simonyan. In PEC 2211 a voter complained of
unprofessional and aggressive phone interviews, which had characteristics of an undercover campaigning
forthecandidateLaisheva.

ViolationofVotingOrganizationProcedures
A significant number of violations of the election day procedures were related with an insufficient
competence and negligence of the members of the election commissions. A number of procedures were
notfolloweddeliberatelyinordertopreventobserversfromobtainingreliableinformation.
For example, in the Lipetsk Oblast, PEC 508 as of 09:25 stationary and mobile ballot boxes were not
sealed. In Samara, PEC 2911, 2912 and 2904 materials for voters with information on candidates income
were missing. In Ufa, PEC 32 signatures of the members of the election commission in the journal of the
receipt of ballots were missing. Register for voting outside the polling station was not filled in, but the
members of the PEC argued that there were 73 applications for homebased voting. In the Ryazan Oblast,
PEC 126 the secrecy of voting has been violated voting took place at the hall on the table, which was
located next to the guard. In Samara, PEC 3017 mobile ballot boxes were held in the back room out of the
sight of observers. In the Ivanovo Oblast, PEC 674 voters' registers were not stitched. Reports have been
received about inaccuracies in voters' lists. For instance, in St. Petersburg, PEC 1594 despite the fact
that the voter has been living at the given address for 10 years, he was not included in the voters' list. They
hadtofillintheapplicationforminordertobeincludedinthesupplementaryvoters'list.

ViolationofElectoralRights,PressureatWork,CoerciontoVote
Some reports on the violation of the principle of voluntary participation in elections and freedom of
expression of voters' will have been received. Different technologies were employed to coerce voters to
vote. Social workers were actively using their wards for the organization of homebased voting. Thus,
experts and observers raised many questions about voluntary participation in the elections and the freedom
tovoteofsociallyunprotectedgroupsofcitizensthatareunderguardianshipofsocialworkers.
In some schools attempts to influence parents during parents' meetings, aiming both to increase voter
turnout and campaign for particular candidates, have been reported. For example, in Moscow, PEC 1921
parents of pupils of the 937
th
high school, where the PEC 1921 was located, were issued special vouchers
after voting. The class with the highest number of vouchers received a bonus. In Moscow, PEC 272 a
voter came to vote and asked to take his picture with the ballot paper. He explained that he was required
to introduce the photo at work and was threatened with dismissal. In St. Petersburg, PEC 1890 upon
arrival to the polling station a voter was informed that the ballot paper had already been issued on her
behalf, her personal data had been filled in the register, but her signature had been forged. After
addressing the Chairman, members of the election commission crossed out the record with a pencil. The
voter was not satisfied with that (the pencil can be erased), thus she addressed the election commission on
theirproposedform.Shewasincludedinthesupplementaryvoters'listandwasfinallyabletovote.

ViolationofPublicControllers'Rights
Particular attention should be paid to the violations of the rights of observers, media representatives and
themembersoftheelectioncommissions.
Despite the fact that the Central Election Commission of Russian Federation was not organizing elections,
it still played a leading role. On the website of the CEC of RF the following message of the pressservice
has been posted: 'The participation in the electoral process of nonprofit organization acting as a foreign
agent, as well as representatives of the media outlets established by it, is a violation of the Federal Law on
'Basic Guarantees of Electoral Rights and the Right of Citizens of the Russian Federation to Participate in
a Referendum'. First of all, the message of the CEC includes the reference to only one of the Moscow
City Court's decisions. While the Moscow City Court under cassation canceled earlier decisions of the
lower courts, which led to the inclusion of the Golos Association in the register of organizations acting as
aforeignagent.
In particular, the Court found that, given the legal position of the Constitutional Court of the Russian
Federation, stated in the ordinance as of April 8, 2014 10P, it is impossible to draw a conclusion about
the presence of foreign funding of the Association, required for the recognition of it as acting as a foreign
agent. Thus, the Ministry of Justice was obliged to cancel its earlier decision on the inclusion of
organizationintheregister,asitwasdeterminedthattherewasnoreasonfortheinclusion.
Second of all, the CEC of RF did not have the right to instruct the lower level commissions to restrict the
rights of the media representatives. No media outlets can be restricted in their rights upon admission to the
polling stations. This is confirmed by the fact that the CEC in its message did not provide a link to a
specific provision of the law, using only highsounding words "spirit" and "letter" of the law. Thus, the CEC
violated the rights of the media and we consider it as an offense and a crime under Article 5.6 of the
AdministrativeCodeofRFandArticle144oftheCriminalCodeofRF.
Such behavior of the CEC of RF, as one would expect, was in fact a direct recommendation to prevent
correspondents of the 'Civic Voice' from conducting election observation and formed the basis for mass
cases of nonadmission of our correspondents in the Samara and Chelyabinsk Oblasts, the Republic of
BashkiriyaandinanumberofthedistrictsofPodmoskovye.
The CEC was illegally trying to restrict public control that actually lead to discreditation of not only the
instituteofobservers,butalsotheinstituteofRussianelectionsingeneral.
Because of the message of the CEC, all the correspondents of the 'Civic Voice' in the Chelyabinsk Oblast
were denied access to the polling stations (for example, PECs 2258, 548, 682, 571, 820, 796, 557, 542,
532). The Chairman of the Chelyabinsk Oblast election commission, A. Starostina, sent a corresponding
letter to lower level commissions with the sample of the decision regarding the expulsion of the
representatives of the 'Civic Voice'. The letter says that 'in case of the presence of representatives from
NGOsforeign agents or representatives of the media outlets, established by foreign agents, including
Golos, PEC must urgently take the decision regarding expulsion of the above mentioned representatives
from the polling stations'. Similar situation has arisen in the Republic of Bashkortostan, Ivanovo, Lipetsk,
Moscow,NizhnyNovgorodandSamaraOblasts.
Multiple observers rights violations have been reported during the elections in St. Petersburg. On the
election day, media representatives, members of the election commissions with the right of advisory and
decisive votes were illegally expelled from the polling stations. Observers and media representatives were
forbiddentomovearoundinvotingpremises,tomakephotoandvideoshooting.
Similar cases of the restriction on correspondents movement in voting premises, bans on the photo and
video shooting were observed in some of the regions (see the Map of Violations) and to a large extent in
the Moscow Oblast. The greatest number of observers rights violations in the Moscow Oblast has been
recordedintheBalashikha,Zhukovsky,KoroliovandOdintsovskiydistricts.
Reports on illegal and unmotivated expulsion of observers and members of the election commissions with
the right of decisive vote also raise particular concerns. Individual cases of unmotivated observers
expulsion have been observed in Nizhny Novgorod, Golitsinino, the Moscow Oblast and some other
regions,buttheywerenotsowidespread.

ViolationsduringtheVoteCountingandTabulation
Around 50 reports on violations during the vote counting have been received on the Map of Violations.
The entire array of violations, related to the vote count, can be divided into the following categories:
rewriting of protocols, rearranging ballot papers from a pack for one candidate to a pack for another
candidate ('perestroica'), procedural violations, reports on a higher number of ballot papers in stationary
ballotboxes exceeded those issued to voters, the restriction of the rights (expulsions) of observers, media
representatives, members of the election commissions, attempts to hide the consequences of ballotbox
stuffing,i.e.toscatterpacksofballotpapers.
A large number of violations, related to the vote count, was reported in the Moscow Oblast. In Zhukovsky
city rewriting of protocols and 'perestroitsa' have been observed. In Balashikha attempts to hide the
consequences of ballotbox stuffing have been reported. Most likely this was the main reason for the
discrepancies between the main control indicators number of ballot papers in the stationary ballotbox
exceededthoseissuedtovoters.
St. Petersburg took the second place regarding the number of reports, related to the violations of vote
counting, received on the hotline of Golos. For example, the main control indicators did not match in
already published final protocols on the website of the city election commission, although control indicators
should be checked automatically upon entering into an automated system 'GAS Vybory'. If it does not
happen, it is likely that someone allowed introducing such data without checking the control indicators.
Such discrepancies occurred, according to the data of the protocols, in 111 PECs in governor's elections
and241PECsinmunicipalelections.
Morevoer, over 100 polling stations have been observed, where these discrepancies were positive, that is,
in the stationary ballot boxes there were less ballot papers than issued to voters. Usually it means that
voters took away their ballot paper and this figure always ranges between 10 and 15 units per polling
station. However, according to the data of 'GAS Vybory', from the PECs of St. Petersburg one can see
that the difference of over one hundred of allegedly taken ballot papers was in 114 municipal protocols and
192protocolsinthegovernorselections.
According to the witnesses and analysis of reports received on the Map of Violations and the hotline
during the election campaign and on the election day, one can see that direct falsifications on the voting
dayhavebeenemployedonceagain:ballotboxstuffingandrewritingoffinalprotocols.
Expulsion of observers in these elections had a mass character in a number of regions. First of all, the
results entered into 'GAS Vybory', included a number of obvious errors, demonstrating that control
indicatorshadnotbeencheckedupondataentry.
The election day on September 14 showed that despite the changes in the legislation, which prevented
many candidates from overcoming the municipal filter or gathering the necessary amount of voters
signatures,thelevelofdirectfalsificationsontheelectiondayremainshighinmanyregions.
Since all the correspondents of Golos noted abnormally small number of observers in the elections of
September 14 (in most of the PECs no more than one observer, and, as a rule, representative of the
progovernment candidate), we are not able to expose all the violations that took place on these elections.
The current statement highlights only those violations that were directly observed by the correspondents of
Golos, observers of the Observers Alliance or received on the hotline. All these facts require serious
analysis.