Liberal or Authoritarian? How Would You Evaluate the 1993 Russian Constitution?
The interpretation of the constitution became important in this respect with the two wars in Chechnya creating constitutional divides.
This has to be contrasted with the needs of the Russian Federation at the time of the constitutions formation. An authoritarian president provided the stability that was required to avoid a slide back towards the totalitarian regime. The importance placed upon this was emphasised by the damage to the system caused by the clash between Yeltsin and the CPD during the transitionary period. The biggest failing of the constitution though is the deliberate hindrance on attempts to reform the constitution. When the Russian Federation is no longer an emerging democracy, there will be a need to promote greater liberalism thought the system, to curb the president's powers and to ensure a greater separation of powers. When that time comes reforming this rigid constitution, or even drafting a new constitution could severely upset the system.
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