The Russian government resigns in its entirety as President Putin announces sweeping reforms that change the balance of power.
Power Shifting from President to Prime Minister?
Russia’s president Vladimir Putin proposes constitutional amendments that would change the balance of power in the country, strengthening the prime minister’s position and the parliament over the presidency.
In his speech, the president thanked members of the government and now-resigned Prime Minister Medvedev for their work, although he said that “not everything worked out,” but he was still satisfied with the achieved results.
“[Putin] outlined a number of fundamental changes to the constitution, significant changes not only to a number of articles of the constitution, but also to the balance of power as a whole. In this context, it’s obvious that we, as the government … should provide the president of our country with the opportunity to make all the decisions necessary for this. And in these conditions, I believe that it would be right, in accordance with Section 117 of the constitution, for the government to resign,” Medvedev said in a statement.
While the government seems to be clearing the way for Putin to make his reforms, some have gone as far as to speculate that this may be an attempt by Putin to extend his rule over Russia indefinitely, by shifting the power to the position of prime minister rather than that of president, who can’t serve more than two consecutive terms.
With Medvedev’s resignation, the President has nominated the head of the Federal Taxation Service, Mikhail Mishutin, for the position of prime minister.