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Putin's Electoral Support Has Grown, Poll Shows

Presidential elections in Turginovo village - Vladimir Putin's historical motherland. March 4, 2012. Denis Abramov

President Vladimir Putin's electoral rating rose in December, returning to 2000s levels, a new opinion poll by the independent Levada Center shows.

Asked whom they would vote for if a presidential election took place next Sunday, 68 percent of respondents said they would vote for Putin, up 10 percent from figures in December 2012.

The figures for Putin's closest possible rival, Communist Party leader Gennady Zyuganov, were 11 percent, slightly down from the December 2012 figure of 12 percent.

Some 18 months after Putin's return to presidency, a total of 22 percent of Russians said they wanted him to be re-elected after his six-year term expires in 2018. 

Another 47 percent of respondents said they wanted another person to be Russia's president.

Meanwhile, just 12 percent of those polled said they could name a possible successor for Putin, while 31 percent said there was no person in Russia who could replace Putin currently.

The survey was conducted from December 20-24, 2013, among 1,600 people in 45 regions. The statistical margin of error did not exceed 3.4 percent.

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