Acting Moscow Mayor and mayoral hopeful Sergei Sobyanin has collected the signatures of 160 municipal deputies, comfortably surpassing the minimum amount needed to register for the upcoming election, Sobyanin's chief of staff Lyudmila Shvetsova told Kommersant.
To register for the election, candidates have to collect the signatures of municipal deputies or municipal district heads in at least three-fourths of all municipal districts, or 110 signatures in total.
As an independent candidate, Sobyanin — who is heavily favored to win the race with the informal support of ruling party United Russia and strong connections to the Kremlin — also has to collect the signatures of 73,000 regular voters. So far, Sobyanin has managed to collect almost 28,000 such signatures, according to a ticker on Sobyanin's campaign website. Shvetsova told the newspaper Vechernyaya Moskva that the collection process was “going well.”
By Monday afternoon, 25 candidates had registered to run in the upcoming mayoral election, many of them political unknowns.
Communist Party candidate Ivan Melnikov has nearly collected the required number of deputies' signatures to register for the election, Kommersant reported Monday.
It is unclear how many signatures Nikolai Levichev of A Just Russia or Sergei Mitrokhin of Yabloko have so far managed to collect. Mikhail Degtyarev of the Liberal Democratic Party has managed to collect 25 signatures, according to Kommersant.
RPR-Parnas candidate Alexei Navalny, who has had to dispel rumors that his staff was offering money in return for signatures, has so far collected 70 signatures.
The snap mayoral elections, called after Sobyanin unexpectedly stepped down as mayor earlier this month, will take place on Sept. 8.