While everybody is watching the developments in the United States (and yes, this blog will have a summary of what has happened so far) let us not forget that another country, one considerably closer to us geographically, which has a greater influence on European development because of its reserves of gas and oil. I am, of course, talking about Russia where a presidential election is also due in 2008.
Unlike the vulgar Americans the Russians are not likely to have any razzmatazz. There will be an election and the man nominated by President Putin will win unless there will be a change in the constitution and he will stand again as a saviour of his country.
The BBC reports that former KGB officer, close Putin ally and until recently pugnacious Defence Minister, Sergey Ivanov, has been promoted to the position of first Deputy Prime Minister. This puts him on par with the front runner, the other first Deputy Prime Minister, Dmitry Medvedev. What jolly Cabinet meetings they must have.
The BBC also suggests that Ivanov is at present unpopular as Defence Minister, because of the many problems with the armed forces, in particular behaviour within the army. This would indicate that the BBC thinks all Russians have an extremely low IQ and are likely to forget within a year who the Defence Minister was for a long time.
The truth is that it does not matter. Whoever is anointed will be elected. Even our next Prime Minister, groomed for the post as I write, will have to stand in a real election some time.