Putin to Spend the $7M Maximum Allowed on his Presidential Election Campaign
It's more than the funds of all of his competitors combined
Russian president Vladimir Putin will spend the maximum allowed on his presidential campaign bid of 400 million rubles ($7 million).
Russia's Central Election Commission revealed the amount for funds available to registered candidates, with incumbent Putin far ahead of his competitors.
As of Jan. 5, Putin had 400 million rubles in his election fund and has already spent 13.4 million on print materials.
Four hundred million rubles is the maximum amount permitted by law, and it is bigger than the combined election funds of all of Putin's competitors put together.
Putin's fund is made up of contributions from the largest political party, United Russia, which provided 28 million rubles, again, the maximum allowed contribution by a party.
Also, one private individual contributed over 20,000 rubles, but neither the election commission nor Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov revealed the name of the contributor.
LDPR head Vladimir Zhirinovsky has the second largest campaign fund of just over 200 million rubles. Business ombudsman Boris Titov was able to secure 20.7 million. TV host Ksenia Sobchak has 19.4 million and Yabloko leader Grigory Yavlinsky 15 million.
The smallest amount, 1,066 rubles, is in the fund of the Communist candidate, multimillionaire businessman Pavel Grudinin.
The formal amounts in the various politicians’ funds do not reflect their ability to campaign. Most of the state-supported candidates have access to state media with the state-owned television remaining the main source of information for most of the population.