Constitutional amendments allow Russian president to run two more consecutive times.
Surprise! Putin won.
Russians voted by a landslide to pass constitutional changes that will allow Vladimir Putin to run for president twice more, potentially extending his rule until 2036.
According to official preliminary results published Wednesday, about half an hour after polls closed, around 73 percent voted yes to the amendments, versus 26 percent against. Turnout was about 65 percent.
The amendments will “reset” the two-term presidential limit to zero, allowing Putin to run for another two six-year, consecutive mandates after his current term ends in 2024. He has already led Russia for more than two decades, as either president or prime minister.
Putin has said he is yet to decide whether he would run again. If he does run in the next elections, set for 2024 and 2030, he could be in charge longer than any ruler since Peter the Great, including Joseph Stalin. By the time of the 2036 election, Putin would be 83.
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