The role of the oligarchs in 1996 presidental election in Russia

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Lavrova, Victoria N.
Friedman, Francine, 1948-
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Thesis (M.A.)
Department of Political Science
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This thesis explored the role of the six wealthy Russian businessmen, the oligarchs, in 1996 reelection of President Boris Yeltsin. This research was qualitative and descriptive. The goal was to collect the information from various sources and summarize it, demonstrating how the interference of the oligarchs reflected on the process of the election, as well as on the careers of their own.The research concluded that the oligarchs' role was, first of all, in the organization and financing a highly effective election campaign team; consolidating the business elite and big capital around Yeltsin, using the media that they controlled as a tool of pro-Yeltsin propaganda; and influencing some key decision taken by Yeltsin. The result was Yeltsin's victory, and the increase of the oligarchs' wealth and political power.This ability of the oligarchs to manipulate politics completely cemented the interrelation between business and politics in Russia, which contributed to Russia's reputation as a country of corruption and lawlessness.