In a move that surprised the entire Russian population, if not the world, President Vladmir Putin told the United Russia party he would serve as prime minister under Dimitry Medvedev who is expected to be elected president of the nation. Putin also promised not to alter the current system of power distribution in which the president has greater say in the operation of the government. This promise is undoubtedly one that is guaranteed to be broken once Putin becomes prime minister of the nation. In one sense, allowing the prime minister to have greater power than the president may work toward the development of democracy in Russia. If Russia evolves into a parliamentary democracy it means future presidents will have to run as a member of a political party and make clear who will be their choice for prime minister.
Ironically, Putin’s power grab means the Russian president will lose power and the prime minister who is selected by a political party has greater power. It also means if a political party loses confidence in the prime minister they can replace their choice.