The Russian presidential elections were held on March 18, and if you haven't heard much about them, it's because incumbent President Vladimir Putin was pretty much a shoo-in. The returning fourth-term President had little competition, and observers continue to question whether the elections are as free and fair as the Kremlin would have the world believe. It's hard to buy that all Russians are as enthusiastic about Putin's return as election results suggest, especially considering the numerous videos of individuals blatantly stuffing ballot boxes at polling sites all over the country.
The clips emerged online after the fact, and many of these people are shameless in their attempts to cheat the system.
Some ballot stuffers tried to be a little bit stealthier...
Others couldn't be bothered to hide their intentions.
TASS live blog also has this nugget: Smartphone-less 104-year-old Raisa Pankovsa in Altai was excited to find out about a ballot booth photo contest with prizes for voters. "Kind people promised to help me take a selfie...so it'll be possible to win a TV." https://t.co/7MVZ8VQfkL— Christopher Miller (@ChristopherJM) March 18, 2018
Many people were intimidated for trying to stop the election meddling.
Zukhrab Omarov, 28, an election observer in Dagestan, tried to complain about the sudden appearance of 40 goons at his polling station, whom he suspected were part of a “carousel.” They dragged him outside in full view of the cops and beat him up pic.twitter.com/1obWCSMpIn— max seddon (@maxseddon) March 18, 2018
Unsurprisingly, Putin won the election by a very wide margin.
Meanwhile, even more videos and stories detailing ballot stuffing are appearing online.
Russian authorities don't seem to think the voter fraud, captured on camera, is a big deal.
Congratulations on your fourth term, President Putin! I guess a win is a win, fair or no.