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    IF PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS TOOK PLACE THIS SUNDAY, VLADIMIR PUTIN WOULD BE AN UNCONDITIONAL WINNER

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    MOSCOW, January, 23, 2004. (RIA Novosti correspondent Nikolai Zherebtsov) - If the presidential elections took place this Sunday, Russia's incumbent President, Vladimir Putin, would win an unconditional victory. Today, 70.7 percent of the Russian citizens are ready to vote for him.

    These data were received in the course of the all-Russia representative poll conducted by the Public Opinion independent sociological service on January 17-18. According to sociologists, a statistical error in such polls does not top 3.6 percent.

    The rating of all other registered and potential presidential candidates is considerably lower than Putin's rating. As many as 3.5 percent of the people are ready to vote for the Rodina (Homeland) bloc leader Sergei Glazyev; 1.4 percent - for State Duma deputy Nikolai Kharitonov from the Communist Party; and 1.1 percent - Irina Khakamada, a leader of the Union of Right Forces (SPS).

    All other contenders for the presidency would not score even one percent this Sunday. For example, State Duma independent deputy Ivan Rybkin can hope for the support of only 0.4 percent of the voters; chairman of the Russia's Regions Party Viktor Gerashchenko and the Federation Council Speaker, leader of the Party of Life Sergei Mironov would receive 0.3 percent of the votes each; entrepreneur Anzori Aksentiyev-Kikalishvili and State Duma deputy, nominated by the Liberal-Democratic Party of Russia, Oleg Malyshkin would be supported by 0,2 percent of the constituents each.

    The last one in the ten politicians, who have announced their presidential ambitions, is State Duma independent deputy Vladimir Bryntsalov; only 0.1 percent of the Russian citizens would vote for him.

    It should be noted that the sociologists offered the polled the list of ten politicians according to their rating level during the previous polls.

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