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Legislative Power of Russia

Legislative Power Summary | The State Duma | Council of the Federation | Sources |


Last updated: October 7, 2016


General Description

Results of Elections to the Duma (September 2016)

Responsibilities of the State Duma

Council of the State Duma

The Previous Duma (2011- 2016)




General Description



The State Duma is the lower chamber of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation. In accordance with the Constitution[1], the State Duma comprises 450 delegates.

The Duma is formed on the basis of nation-wide elections and proportional representation system.

Half of the seats (225 seats) goes to the leading parties. Each party, which overpasses certain threshold during the elections (presently 5%), obtains a number of seats in the Duma in proportion to number of votes won.

Another half of the seats (225 seats) goes to private persons who win elections in their constituencies. For the purposes of elections the territory of Russia is divided into 225 constituencies with sole delegate elected from each of them.

Important note: In the course of election campaigns of 2007 and 2011 the Duma delegates were elected using solely party lists (i.e. all of 450 seats were assigned to the parties that overpassed a threshold that was at 7% in 2011). On February 24, 2014 the Federal Law No. 20-FZ “On Election of Delegates of the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation”[2] came into force changing the election system as described above.

The elections of present delegates of the State Duma took place on September 18, 2016, and their term of office will end in 2021.

Important note: In accordance with changes to the Constitution that were enacted on December 31, 2008, the term of office for delegates of the State Duma was increased from 4 years to 5 years starting from elections that took place in 2011.

The delegates of the Duma can form groups and factions. At present the following major factions are represented in the State Duma:

There are also 3 delegates not belonging to the major factions (one delegate from Rodina Party, one delegate from Civil Platform party and one delegate not belonging to any party).

As it can be seen, United Russia, a pro-government party, presently dominates the State Duma. Moreover, nowadays this party holds so-called “constitutional majority”. Having more than 75% of votes in the Duma, United Russia is capable of promoting changes to the Russian Constitution without agreement with the other factions.



Results of Elections to the Duma (September 2016)



Important note: the voter turnout at 2016 elections to the Duma was a record low of 47.8% (60.2% at 2011 elections).

The following parties have been elected to the Duma from constituencies and under the party lists (450 delegates totally):[3]

As it comes to the competition between parties, there were the following election results solely under the party lists (14 parties totally):[4]

After the elections the parties represented in the Duma agreed on committees’ distribution.[5] There are 26 committees totally, half of them controlled by United Russia party. KPRF and LDPR obtained control over 5 committees each, while A Just Russia leads 3 committees.



Responsibilities of the State Duma



Lawmaking. The State Duma carries out assessment and passing/rejecting of bills. The Duma and its delegates have also the right to introduce bills themselves together with other parties (such as the President and the Russian Government). Committees of the State Duma are responsible for initial assessment of proposed bills and their advancing for further consideration by all delegates.

In case a bill passes through the State Duma, before enactment it shall be approved by the Council of the Federation, which is an upper chamber of the Federal Assembly, and then signed by the President.

Other responsibilities. In accordance with the Constitution, the specific issues under the jurisdiction of the State Duma are as follows:

Decisions of the State Duma typically require ½ of the total number of votes of its delegates.



Council of the State Duma



The Council of the State Duma is responsible for assessment and organisation of issues related to the Duma’s operations.

The Council comprises the following groups of the delegates:

The Chairperson and Deputy Chairpersons of the State Duma are in charge of organisation of activities of the Duma and presently have the following areas of responsibility[6]:

Mr. Vyacheslav Volodin, the Chairperson of the State Duma

Official page: http://www.duma.gov.ru/structure/deputies/1756721/

Photo source: http://www.duma.gov.ru/

1. Coordination and control over operations of the following committees in the Duma:

2. Coordination and control over operations of the following committees:

3. Control over operations of the Office of the State Duma.

Mr. Aleksandr Zhukov, the First Deputy Chairperson of the State Duma

Official page: http://www.duma.gov.ru/structure/deputies/1756852/

Photo source: http://www.duma.gov.ru/

1. Organisation of interactions of the State Duma with the Administration of the President and the Russian Government on legislative issues (representation of the State Duma in the Commission of the Government on Legislative Activities).

2. Supervision over drafting the program of the Duma’s legislative activities, calendar on consideration of issues by the Duma and regulations on organisation of sittings.

3. Coordination and control over operations of the following committees in the Duma:

4. Coordination of interactions between factions and committees when elaborating the federal budget draft.

5. Interactions with international organisations in the field of economic and financial cooperation, G20 parliamentary representatives and parliamentary interactions within BRICS.

Mr. Ivan Melnikov, the First Deputy Chairperson of the State Duma

Official page: http://www.duma.gov.ru/structure/deputies/1756652/

Photo source: http://www.duma.gov.ru/

1. Representation of the State Duma in the Council of the Federation.

2. Interactions of the Duma with human rights organisations.

3. Coordination and control over operations of the following committees in the Duma:

4. Cooperation with Parliamentary Assembly of the Union of Byelorussia and Russia, Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), Interparliamentary Assembly of Member Nations of the Commonwealth of Independent States, Parliamentary Assembly of Collective Security Agreement Organisation, etc.

5. Coordination of issues on elaboration of the model legislation by the Duma.

Mr. Vladimir Vasiljev, the Deputy Chairperson of the State Duma

Official page: http://www.duma.gov.ru/structure/deputies/1756714/

Photo source: http://www.duma.gov.ru/

1. Interactions with the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation and Prosecutor General’s Office of the Russian Federation.

2. Coordination and control over operations of the Committee on Security and Corruption Counteraction.

3. Mobilization preparedness of the Duma delegates.

4. Cooperation of the Duma with Parliamentary Assembly of North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Ms. Irina Yarovaya, the Deputy Chairperson of the State Duma

Official page: http://www.duma.gov.ru/structure/deputies/1756553/

Photo source: http://www.duma.gov.ru/

1. Analysis of legislative activities of subjects of the Federation and supervision over harmonization of the federal and regional legislation (member of the Council of Lawmakers of the Russian Federation under the Russian Federal Assembly).

2. Coordination and control over operations of the following committees in the Duma:

3. Cooperation with Interparliamentary Assembly of Orthodoxy.

Mr. Pyotr Tolstoi, the Deputy Chairperson of the State Duma

Official page: http://www.duma.gov.ru/structure/deputies/1756790/

Photo source: http://www.duma.gov.ru/

1. Coordination and control over operations of the following committees in the Duma:

2. Supervision over publishing activities of the State Duma.

3. Cooperation with EU Parliament and European Commission, Inter-Parliamentary Union and Parliamentary Assembly of Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).

Mr. Igor Lebedev, the Deputy Chairperson of the State Duma

Official page: http://www.duma.gov.ru/structure/deputies/1756663/

Photo source: http://www.duma.gov.ru/

1. Coordination of cultural, social and humanitarian issues of international nature and issues related to emergencies.

2. Coordination and control over operations of the following committees in the Duma:

3. Cooperation with the Nordic Council, the Baltic Sea Parliamentary Conference and the Conference of Parliamentarians of the Arctic Region (CPAR).

Mr. Sergey Neverov, the Deputy Chairperson of the State Duma

Official page: http://www.duma.gov.ru/structure/deputies/1756959/

Photo source: http://www.duma.gov.ru/

1. Coordination and control over operations of the Committee on Agricultural Issues.

2. Cooperation with legislative bodies of Japan and India.

Ms. Olga Yepifanova, the Deputy Chairperson of the State Duma

Official page: http://www.duma.gov.ru/structure/deputies/1756843/

Photo source: http://www.duma.gov.ru/

1. Interactions with the federal executive power bodies on problems of northern territories and other areas with similar status.

2. Coordination and control over operations of the following committees in the Duma:

3. Cooperation with Interparliamentary organisations of Asia-Pacific region and Asian countries.



The Previous Duma (2011- 2016)



There were the following factions in the State Duma in 2011-2016:



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