Russian President Vladimir Putin is constitutionally barred from running for a third term in 2008. But most Russians say they can’t envision anyone but him as president. In a recent poll, more than half of Russians said they would vote for Putin if he could run again. When presented with a list of potential candidates that did not include Putin, the highest number of votes—more than 25 percent—went to “none of the above.” Actually, “none of the above” is a perennial favorite in Russian elections, but authorities said they would drop that option from the next presidential ballot. The Kremlin’s top pick as Putin’s successor, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev, is polling at just 9 percent, one percentage point ahead of Communist Party leader Gennadi Zyuganov.
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