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    SAMARA GOVERNOR TO BE USED AS HUMAN GUINEA-PIG TO TEST NEW SCHEME FOR ELECTING REGIONAL HEADS?

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    MOSCOW, September 16 (RIA Novosti) - Yesterday the Supreme Court postponed until September 27 examination of a supervisory complaint from the Central Election Committee challenging the calling by the local court for September 19 of the election of Samara regional governor Konstantin Titov. The official reason for putting off the consideration of the complaint was the illness of a CEC representative. Candidates for the post of governor consider that the election may not take place at all, and head of the region will be chosen by deputies of the regional parliament.

    Such a development of events did not surprise either analysts or potential candidates for governorship. "I knew beforehand that this may happen," State Duma deputy Viktor Kazakov told Kommersant. In his view, the election will take place next year under the scheme proposed a few days ago by President Vladimir Putin. "I believe matters point to a postponement of the election until the next year," was the suggestion made by Deputy Vladimir Mokry. "Looking at the situation that emerged in the country over the past two to three days, it can be supposed that the Central Election Committee deliberately took time out to sort things and decide which system of election it is going to back."

    A ranking source in the Samara regional government assumed that "a new governor of the region is most likely to be elected by deputies of the regional parliament". "The Samara region looks a very convenient place for the trial of the new scheme. The term for which Titov has been elected has already ran out, but no election date has been fixed. I do not rule out that a new governor will be recommended from above by way of experiment, without waiting for amendments to the law," the source summed up.

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