Top Russian free mason to run for Olympic city mayor
Bogdanov’s party widely seen as a Kremlin-controlled project to draw votes away from actual opposition candidates and give voters a tame liberal option.
Russia’s top mason and former presidential candidate, Andrei Bogdanov, is running in the Sochi mayor elections this spring. He is the 19th candidate seeking to get the top position in the Russian resort city that is hosting the 2014 Winter Olympic Games.
On Wednesday, Bogdanov arrived in Sochi, eyed by numerous businessmen ahead of the Olympics, to file his documents at the elections committee, Russian news agencies said.
He refused to comment on his chances to win the elections, but said he had a program developed to prepare Sochi for the Olympic Games. He also announced he was going to meet the voters and discuss their problems.
Andrei Bogdanov is known for heading Russia’s largest Masonic lodge.
“I am proud to be in and to head the great Masonic Lodge of Russia, whose members were Pushkin, Suvorov, and Kutuzov,” he said in one of his interviews.
However he is better known as the leader of the Democratic Party of Russia, that won 1.3 percent at the 2008 presidential elections in Russia.
Bogdanov’s party was widely seen as a Kremlin-controlled project to draw votes away from actual opposition candidates and give voters a tame liberal option.
Meanwhile, the Sochi mayoral elections promise to be interesting, with 19 candidate enlisted so far, including billionaire Alexander Lebedev and opposition leader Boris Nemtsov. Andrei Lugovoi, wanted in UK for the killing of Alexander Litvinenko, has recently pulled out of the race.