Putin claimed a “moral right” to keep a hand in Russian politics today if his party wins the December 2 election, Reuters reports. A victory for the pro-Kremlin United Party looks likely, so how would he rule after resigning as president in May? "I will refrain from a direct reply about the form in which this will be done," he said. "But there are various options.”
He could be majority leader, officially or otherwise; or he may lead the Kremlin Security Council, be prime minister, or even rule sans title, analysts say. Whatever happens, United Party is calling the ballot a “referendum on Putin” and using his popularity to gain votes. Polls show that voters like Putin, but are dubious of the party; Russia's liberal opposition is splintered and has no chance to win.