How Long Has Putin Been President (And Why)?

Exact Answer: Approximately Two Decades

Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin is a Russian politician and former intelligence officer who is currently serving as the president of Russia since 2012. He had previously held the same post from 2000 until 2008.

As of 2021, Putin is the second longest-serving European president, after Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus. Putin has been leading the country of Russia since August 1999. He was also the prime minister from 1999 to 2000 and again from 2008 to 2012.

How Long Has Putin Been President?

Posts HeldTenureTime Period
Prime Minister of Russia1999 – 20008 months, 29 days
President of Russia2000 – 20088 years, 128 days
Prime Minister of Russia2008 – 20124 years
President of Russia2012 – PresentApprox. 9 years

Putin has had two stints as president of Russia. Putin’s term of office from 2000 to 2008 constituted his 1st and 2nd presidential terms which had a total length of 8 years and 128 days. His 3rd and 4th term from 2012 to present has completed approximately 9 years.

He was appointed as the prime minister of Russia on 9th August 1999 by the then-president Boris Yeltsin. Thus, it is safe to say that he has been in the office for a period spanning two years.

Putin has been Russia’s most powerful politician since he assumed the presidency in 2000, after the resignation of his predecessor, Boris Yeltsin. Some critics have likened Putin’s move to a power grab while others call it a “constitutional coup”.

Why Has Putin Been President For This Long?

In the Russian government, the prime minister and president are not equal and normally the land is led by the president of the country. The president is the head of the state and possesses the authority to appoint the prime minister.

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Putin won his first presidential election in 2000, securing his second win in 2004, with more than 70 percent of the total votes. In 2008, he lost his treasured position because of constitutional limits which prevented him from serving more than two consecutive presidential terms.

Putin then became the prime minister of Russia after his ally, Dmitry Medvedev, was named as the Russian president. However, in 2021, he returned to his presidency, apparently winning the election with over 60 percent of the vote after a decision to extend the presidential term from four years to six years.

There had been large anti-Putin protests all over Russia before and after the election with critics alleging voter fraud. Several days after the former Russian spy, Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned, in March 2018, Putin won a landslide re-election victory, allowing him the mandate to stay in office until 2024.

Officially, the new law limits Russian citizens to two presidential terms in their lifetime, outlawing the kind of shuffling between the presidency and the role of the prime minister that Putin employed earlier in his career. However, as the law doesn’t count terms served until the law is entered into force, Putin’s past four terms of presidency including the present term do not count and he can still serve two more.

Russians say he has “zeroed out’ his terms as the new law gives him the option of serving two more consecutive terms even after his current presidential term ending in 2024. Putin has signed a law that can allow him to run for the presidency twice more in his lifetime, potentially keeping him in office until 2036.

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Putin’s current presidential term will expire in 2024.

Conclusion

Vladimir Putin was the president of Russia for consecutive two terms from 2000 to 2008. He then went on becoming the prime minister under the presidency of Dmitry Medvedev for about four years. In 2012, Putin was again elected as Russia’s president until 2018 as the term of the presidency in Russia was increased from 4 to 6 years. In 2018, he was elected for a new presidency term of 6 years until 2024.

Thus, it can be concluded that Putin is in charge of the office for so many years because of the widely popular support from the citizens of Russia. As long as the Russian people continue to support him, he can be in charge of the affairs of Russia as their president.

References

  1. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/09668130802161215
  2. https://heinonline.org/hol-cgi-bin/get_pdf.cgi?handle=hein.journals/gjicl36&section=20
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