''The talks on the topics of Ksenia Sobchak-president seem strange and premature''

The candidate ''against everyone'' meets with her supporters in Kazan and brought to Tatarstan the ideas of federalism

''The talks on the topics of Ksenia Sobchak-president seem strange and premature'' Photo: Oleg Tikhonov

The correspondent of Realnoe Vremya was accompanying Ksenia Sobchak during her whole visit in Kazan. Whether the candidate ''against all'' believes in her success in the presidential election 2018, what Sobchak thinks about Dud and Oxymoron and why she came as an uninvited guest to the Executive Committee of Kazan — read in the report of Realnoe Vremya.

A little more federalism brought to Kazan before the New Year

The main feature of the presidential campaign 2018 is that there is one super candidate and there are many new faces, diluting the usual leaders of the Duma parties. This campaign can't be called boring despite the predictable result. It is evident that the political strategists are not in vain eat their bread. Meanwhile, this format is best suited for testing of new technologies and the introduction of new faces into politics. The presidential race 2018 is without exaggeration a business incubator, and each candidate — a little innovative entrepreneur.

In this new market of political offers the Republic of Tatarstan also has its specialty. If to compare the political marathon with tourism, we get an interesting example. For example, wealthy people go to Milan for shopping. To Antalya, it is less wealthy people go there to forget about work and loans. In Kazan, the candidates in presidents of the Russian Federation go to talk about the regional diversity of the country and federalism. The first to do it in this electoral cycle was Grigory Yavlinsky with his new fiscal policy. Before the New year with the federalist agenda in the capital of Tatarstan there came Ksenia Sobchak, the candidate ''against all'', nominated by the political party Civil Initiative.

The official reason for the visit was the opening of the campaign headquarters in Kazan

''Eat chak-chak – vote for Sobchak''

The official reason for the visit was the opening of the campaign headquarters in Kazan. Although, as assured by the organizers, the staff had already been working for a couple of days, during which they managed to collect more than 100 signatures in support of the candidate. They welcomed Sobchak at the entrance to the headquarters chanting: ''Sobchak! Against all!'' The walls of the headquarters were taped with the transcript of the main slogan: ''Against censorship'', ''Against thieves'', ''Against war''. But in the speeches, there were few of this ''against''. At the meeting of the candidate with presenting the traditional treats it spontaneously had another slogan: ''Eat chak-chak — vote for Sobchak.'' Further communication went by a given vector of localization of the party programme to the realities of the Republic of Tatarstan.

''You have a wonderful city, wonderful republic. And I'm sure there are a lot of people who support one of the main ideas of my programme. Along with alternation of power and independent judiciary, it is federalism. This means more freedom for different regions, more freedom for Tatarstan. Because we shouldn't dictate from Moscow whether your children need to learn the Tatar language or not. It's a decision that should be taken at local, regional level. I want you here to decide your life for yourself, your budget should fill differently and not go to Moscow. I believe that federalism is the basis of our future modern Russia. Yes, we are one big country, but we are all different and some things must differ from region to region,'' Sobchak immediately addressed to her audience, after announcing technical details.

Sobchak is not against Grudinin

The programme of Sobchak's visit was extremely brief. The time for communications with media was reduced to minimum. The only thing that Realnoe Vremya found out, while we moving around the city, is the attitude of Ksenia to the new charismatic member of the presidential race from the Communist Party Pavel Grudinin. On the question whether Grudinin poses danger to the values that form the basis of the programme of Sobchak, the candidate ''against all'' replied that ''for my program the threat is Vladimir Putin and non-alternation of power. The more other candidates are, the better it is.'' Then security service interfered, and the correspondent had to postpone other questions.

The programme of Sobchak's visit was extremely brief

Over the hours spent in Kazan, Sobchak managed to do a few things. First, answered the questions from the audience in the headquarters. The audience was diverse: from the Tatar nationals to intelligent women of advanced years, which described itself as ''a woman in a knitted cap.'' The nationals praised the federalist agenda, to the woman Ksenia replied that she had exactly the same hat. Second, Sobchak held a personal reception of the citizens. She made a surprise to the Executive Committee of Kazan, appearing there for coordination of a picket. She also photographed at the mosque Kul Sharif, has a meeting in the hotel Mirage.

The most successful part of the visit, in our opinion, was a visit to the school for intellectually passionate children Solntse. Coincidentally, the most notable of local supporters of federalism in matters of education, after former minister Fattakhova, it was director of this school Pavel Shmakov. Shmakov refused to fire a teacher of the Tatar language and is still suing the prosecutor office on the interference in the life of the school. No matter how you treat Sobchak, she best of many presidential candidates understands the young audience. Therefore, the conversation was sincere without the quotes.

No matter how you treat Sobchak, she best of many presidential candidates understands the young audience

''Kinda'' elections and the relationshipsd with Kadyrov

At the short meeting of Sobchak with supporters in the hotel Mirage, Realnoe Vremya was one of two media that have managed to ask its question. In the full hall there again were voiced the topics of autonomy and broad powers of regions. However, the candidate came to the paradoxical conclusion that now only strong regional leaders with authoritarian, ''ruler'' characters can confront the authoritarian course of Moscow. Having remembered the complicated relationships of Sobchak and the leadership of the Chechen Republic and the previously mentioned point about the double standards of Moscow in relation to Kazan and Grozny, we asked how President Sobchak was going to build relations with Ramzan Kadyrov. The candidate's response clarifies a lot:

''I want to reiterate that any talks on the subject ''President Ksenia Sobchak'' seem strange to me and very premature. I have no illusions on this. I haven't gone to space. I live in real Russia and see what is happening, I go to the elections just to be a voice for those people who don't agree with the regime that our nation has. I have no illusions about these ''kinda''. I just understand that in any situation that we even don't like, we should not be silent, and to say our ''no'' to this government and to express our ''against all''. So I was taught from my childhood.

In this sense, the rare case when participation in these ''kinda election'' is an opportunity to speak on the federal TV channels what I was not allowed to tell all these years. They never showed the position of my colleagues — journalists of the TV channel Dozhd, never showed my position, and now they have to do it. There are statutory time allowances for all candidates. This is why I am running for president.

I live in real Russia and see what is happening, I go to the elections just to be a voice for those people who don't agree with the regime that our nation has

The answer to your question is very simple. When we live in the ideal model for Russia in my understanding, this is the model of a parliamentary republic. It will be a model, when not President Sobchak, 'Pupkin' or any other will have to build relations with Kadyrov. It will be a model in which a strong government, strong parliament will have to build relations with all regions.

And I think in the future, as soon as Putin goes away, there will also immediately disappear Kadyrov and all those people with whom there is this ''cover-up''. Do you think that all love Kadyrov in Chechnya? You see, to fear, to love and respect are still sometimes different things. I'm pretty sure in Russia a strong parliament should decide such issues, and strong government should engage in such meetings and discussions, but not to close everything up on one person. While we are closing everything up on one person, no matter what his last name — Putin or another, we will have exactly the same problems. Anyone will seize power and become those on whom the hierarchy closes.''

Why are politics with bold ideas worse ambitious entrepreneurs?

Immediately after the meeting with supporters and the press, Ksenia Sobchak accompanied by the employees of the Central headquarters went to the airport. Those who do not have time to ask questions loudly expressed their disappointment. The rest left the hotel complex from the Kazan Kremlin. From the representatives of local authorities (excluding surprised officers of the Executive Committee) accompanying the candidate ''against all'' there were only the employees of the center for extremism prevention, carefully shooting everything all on camera. Maybe, the Republican authorities, who attract to Tatarstan businessmen with bold ideas, should pay attention to politicians? If they come with the federalist agenda, why not use it? It certainly won't hurt the relations with the Chechen Republic, this cooperation has a deeper reason. But a possibility for maneuver won't hurt.

1/52
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
  • Oleg Tikhonov
By Mark Shishkin. Photo: Oleg Tikhonov