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Communist Party of the Russian Federation
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Communist Party of the Russian Federation
Коммунистическая партия Российской Федерации
Kommunisticheskaya Partiya Rossiskoy Federatsii

Leader   Gennady Zyuganov
Founded   13 February 1993
Headquarters   Moscow, Russia
Ideology   Communism
Russian nationalism
International affiliation   Union of Communist Parties — Communist Party of the Soviet Union
European affiliation   Unified European Left Group (PACE)
Website
www.CPRF.ru
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The Communist Party of the Russian Federation (Russian: Коммунистическая партия Российской Федерации; КПРФ; Kommunisticheskaya Partiya Rossiskoy Federatsii; KPRF) is a Russian political party. It is sometimes seen as a successor to the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU) and the Bolshevik Party.Contents [hide]
1 History of the party
2 Criticism
3 Electoral results
4 Electorate
5 See also
6 Bibliography
7 External links
8 References


[edit]
History of the party

The CPRF is led by Gennady Zyuganov, who co-founded the party in early 1993 with senior Soviet politicians Yegor Ligachev and Anatoly Lukyanov among others. Zyuganov had been the protege of Alexander Yakovlev, the "godfather of glasnost", on the CPSU Central Committee, and after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 he became active in the Russian "national-patriotic" movement[1][2], being the chairman of the National Salvation Front (some authors call him a nationalist[3]). Early external collaborators included Eurasianist philosopher Aleksandr Dugin who helped to draft earlier party documents and pushed the party in the direction of nationalism.

A new leftist[citation needed] umbrella movement was formed on the initiative of the CPRF on August 7, 1996. It was called People's Patriotic Union of Russia (NPSR) and consisted of more than 30 left-wing and right-wing nationalist organizations, such as the Russian All-People's Union led by Sergey Baburin. Gennady Zyuganov was its chairman. He was supported by the party as a candidate for Russia's presidency during the 1996 Presidential elections and 2000 Presidential elections. During the presidential elections of 1996, the CPRF was supported by prominent intellectual Aleksandr Zinovyev (a former Soviet dissident who became a supporter of Communism at the time of Perestroika). Another prominent supporter of the CPRF is the physicist Zhores Alferov, who received the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2000.

Zyuganov called the 2003 elections a 'revolting spectacle' and accuses the Kremlin of setting up a Potemkin party, the Rodina party, to steal its votes.

CPRF's former members include many popular politicians, who seceded after their ambitions on party leading collided with Zyuganov's, who held the stronger support. Gennady Seleznev in 2001, Sergey Glazyev in 2003 and Gennady Semigin in 2004 were the most notable "dissenters". Commentators characterize the dominating Zyuganov wing as nationalist[4] or 'popular-patriotic' (which is often used by the party militants themselves), rather than orthodox Marxist-Leninist. Some observers consider only Richard Kosolapov's minority faction of the CPRF as ideologically communist per se[5].

A minority faction criticised the decision to candidate "millionaires" (such as Sergei Sobko, general director and owner of the TEKHOS company) in the CPRF's lists, which was seen as a contradiction to the Marxist-Leninist and anti-oligarchic policies of the Party.

In July 2004 a breakaway faction elected Vladimir Tikhonov as its leader. The faction later formed the All-Russia Communist Party of the Future. The operation wasn't successful and recently Tikhonov's party has suspended active operations, seeking rapprochement with Zyuganov's side.

CPRF was endorsed by Sergey Baburin's People's Union for the 2007 Russian parliamentary elections. [1]

The Russian Federal Registration Service says that 164,546 voters have registered with the government as members of the CPRF.[6]

The official ideology of the party are Marxism-Leninism, Communism and patriotism. The party has emphasized its uniquely Russian character and it has consistently invoked Russian patriotism and nationalism in addition to the official Marxism-Leninism of the CPSU.[7] Unlike the CPSU after 1956, the CPRF celebrates the rule of Joseph Stalin[8].

[edit]
Criticism

According to Gorbachev Foundation analyst Dmitry Furman, the party's “fascistoid features are so salient that one has to be blind and deaf not to notice them.[9] Marxist theoretician Boris Kagarlitsky writes: "It is enough to recall that within the Communist movement itself, Zyuganov's party was at first neither the sole organisation, nor the largest. Bit by bit, however, all other Communist organisations were forced out of political life. This occurred not because the organisations in question were weak, but because it was the KPRF that had received the Kremlin's official approval as the sole recognised opposition."[10]

[edit]
Electoral results
 
Communist Party supporters attend a May Day rally in Moscow in 2001   This article may need to be updated. Please update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information, and remove this template when finished. Please see the talk page for more information. (April 2009)


In parliament, after an initial slow start with just 12.4% of vote in the first 1993 parliamentary elections, it grew to 22% in the 1995 parliamentary elections, making it by far the biggest Russian party, raised after that, to 24% in the 1999 elections and then declined dramatically by losing almost half of its votes to 13% in the 2003 parliamentary elections, resulting in 51 out of 450 seats. In the 2007 Russian parliamentary elections the party won 11.6% of the vote, a slight decrease in percentage points, although the election resulted in an increase in the number of votes obtained by the party (more than 8 million votes) and in the number of seats held by the party. The CPRF enjoyed highest support in Tambov Oblast (19.17%), Oryol Oblast (17.58%) and Bryansk Oblast (17.09%). As of 2008 the Communist Party continues to be the second largest party in Russia, as well as the largest opposition party.

In all presidential elections since the fall of the Soviet Union, the Communist candidate came second. In the 1996 elections, candidate Gennady Zyuganov rose to 32% of the votes, just short of Yeltsin's 35%. In the 2000 elections, Zyuganov was the communist candidate, and dropped slightly to 29%, but Vladimir Putin won a landslide victory with 53%. In the presidential election held on 14 March 2004, Putin's support rose to 71% and the Communist Party's candidate, Nikolay Kharitonov, won only 14%. Taking into consideration the fact that Kharitonov (a leading member of the Agrarian Party of Russia) was considered to be a "token" candidate, this was a better result than expected, showing that the CPRF still has a substantial base of support. In the 2008 presidential election, CPRF leader Gennady Zyuganov ran again for President, placing second with a surprising 17.8% (13,243,550 votes). Zyuganov even managed to beat United Russia's candidate Dimitry Medvedev in some small villages and towns. After the election, Zyuganov said that his supporters had uncovered numerous violations and that he should have gotten at least 30% of the vote and he added that he would challenge the results in court. Some weeks later, Russia's Central Election Commission admitted that most of the complaints by the CPRF regarding violations during the election were well grounded and justified,[2] but wouldn't have changed the outcome of the vote.

In February 2005 the CPRF managed to beat the ruling pro-Kremlin party, United Russia, in elections to the regional legislature of Nenets Autonomous Okrug, obtaining 27% of the popular vote.

In the Moscow Duma election held on 4 December 2005, the Party won 16.75 % and 4 seats. This was the best ever result for the CPRF in Moscow. In some observers opinion, the absence of the Rodina party contributed to the Communists' success.

On March 11, 2007, elections took place for 14 regional and local legislatures. The CPRF performed very well and increased its votes in most of the territories; it came second in Oryol Oblast (23.78%), Omsk Oblast (22.58%), Pskov Oblast (19.21%) and Samara Oblast (18.87%), Moscow Oblast (18.80%), Murmansk Oblast (17.51%) and Tomsk Oblast (13.37%). [3] These results testify that the CPRF is the most significant opposition party in Russia.

On May 21, 2007, the CPRF obtained an important success in the Volgograd's mayoral election. Communist candidate Roman Grebennikov was elected as mayor with 32.47% of the vote. Grebennikov is the youngest mayor of a regional capital.
Results of the CPRF in regional parliamentary electionsRegion   2003-2005
 %   2009
 %
Arkhangelsk Oblast   8.61   16.67
Bryansk Oblast   18.57   22.76
Vladimir Oblast   20.33   27.75
Volgograd Oblast   25.83   23.56
Kabardino-Balkaria   8.69   8.36
Karachay-Cherkessia   15.57   10.07
Nenets Autonomous Okrug   25.86   20.88
Tatarstan   6.34   11.15
Khakassia   7.04   14.69
Total   12.79   15.88

Results of the CPRF in national electionsRegion   2003
 %   2007
 %
Murmansk Oblast   7.44   17.47
Komi Republic   8.72   14.23
Vologda Oblast   8.77   13.44
Leningrad Oblast   9.05   17.07
Saint Petersburg   8.48   16.02
Pskov Oblast   15.17   19.41
Moscow Oblast   9.67   18.81
Oryol Oblast   16.28   23.78
Samara Oblast   17.38   18.39
Stavropol Krai   13.70   14.28
Dagestan   18.31   6.64
Omsk Oblast   16.23   22.90
Tyumen Oblast   9.94   8.43
Tomsk Oblast   12.60   13.37
Total   12.27   16.02


[edit]
Electorate
 
КПРФ (01.05.2009)

The CPRF has its stronghold in large cities and major industrial and scientific centers ( the so-called "naukograds" ) and in small towns and cities around Moscow.[11] For example, one of the few polling stations that CPRF were a success during Russian legislative election, 2007, was one at Moscow State University.[12]

The Party's electorate is composed mainly by pensioners, industrial workers and not-for-profit organizations' employees. The past few years have also seen a growth in its support of the leftist youth groups,[citation needed] such as the Vanguard of Red Youth. A representative of CPRF was present at "the Other Russia" conference of opposition parties in 2006. Also recent 2007-2007 elections witnessed a growing number of protesting voters who gave their votes to the Party even though not being left-leaning since they saw no tangible alternative.
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Russian Communist Workers' Party – Revolutionary Party of Communists
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The Russian Communist Workers' Party – Revolutionary Party of Communists (RCWP-RPC) (Russian: Российская Коммунистическая Рабочая Партия – Революционная Партия Коммунистов, РКРП-РПК; transcription: Rossiiskaja Kommunistieskaja Raboaja Partija – Revolyutsionnaja Partija Kommunistov, RKRP-RPK) is a communist party in Russia. It was established in October 2001, through the unification of the Russian Communist Workers' Party and the Russian Party of Communists, with the aim of resurrecting socialism and the USSR.
 
The column of RCWP-RPC on 1st may demonstration in Izhevsk

The RCWP-RPC is led by Viktor Tyulkin ( he was co-chairman with Anatolii Kriuchkov until the latter deceased in 2005 ).

In the 1999 Duma Election, the Party won 2.2% and 1,481,890 votes.

The RCWP-RPC considers the Communist Party of the Russian Federation (CPRF) to be reformist but in occasion of the 2003 Duma Election the Party leaders decided to make an agreement with the CPRF in order not to disperse the communist vote.

It publishes a newspaper Trudovaja Rossija (Трудовая Россия; «Working People's Russia») and the journal Sovetskij Sojuz (Советский Союз; «Soviet Union»).

The RCWP-RPC claims to have supported all the biggest occupations and strikes in Russia. It has links to the Russian trade union «Zashchita». It claims about 55,000 members (2006).

The youth organization of the RCWP-RPC is called RCYL(b) («Revolutionary Communist Youth League (Bolsheviks)») and is one of the most active communist youth organizations in Russia. RCYL(b) is led by Alexander Batov.
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The All-Union Communist Party Bolsheviks (Всесоюзная Коммунистическая партия большевиков, ВКПБ, Vsesoyuznaya Kommunisticheskaya Partiya bol'shevikov, VKPb) is a Marxist-Leninist and anti-revisionist political party operating in Russia and other former Soviet states. It was founded in November 1991, and led by Nina Andreyeva, a university teacher who was well known for her 1988 letter 'I cannot give up my principles'. The VKPB has its origins in the 'Bolshevik Platform' of the CPSU. The party is known for its sectarian positions, e.g. it opposes the CPRF due to its 'reformist' character and has refused to back its candidates for presidential election.
 
Newspapers of AUCPB

It published a newspaper called Edinstvo ("Единство"), Bolshevik ("Большевик"), Bolshevik Kavkaza ("Большевик Кавказа"), Bolshevik Stavropol'ja ("Большевик Ставрополья"), Bolshevik Osetii ("Большевик Осетии"), Vpered ("Вперед"), Serp i Molot ("Серп и Молот"), Golos Stalingrada ("Голос Сталинграда"), Raboche-Krest'janskaja pravda ("Рабоче-Крестьянская правда").

Its youth section is the All-Union Young Guard Bolsheviks.