The Following is a list of Political Parties within the Russian Empire. Since Russia's slow transition towards a parliamentarian system, the Empire has seen a equally varying evolution in its political parties. Russia is a multi-party system and there has been a plethora of political parties that have operated in one form or another throughout the Empire's early and later history. This list primarily concerns itself with those political parties which currently operates within the Empire. Some of the parties listed have operated since the earliest days of Russia's opening of the parliamentarian process, though not in the form they are currently in. Others have only recently emerged into the political arena.
Parties in the Russian Empire primarily concern the lower chamber of the Russian Parliament, the People's Duma. This list is divided into two categories, major parties and minor parties. Major parties within the Russian Empire are those political parties which have consistently competed for the majority of the People's Duma. Minor parties are those political parties which do not possess the numbers necessary to gain an unquestioned majority but maintain a consistent number of delegates to the chamber. While minority parties may not always be in a position to effect change directly, sometimes it is necessary for a majority party to join a minority party or two and form a coalition in order to maintain a majority hold on the chamber. During these times in the People's Duma, the minority party or parties are given concessions by the majority in order to facilitate their cooperation in the coalition. While political party association is not outlawed in the upper chamber, the Imperial State Council, association with a political party is usually only confined to those seats not held by a person of the Nobility or Clergy, thus not constituting a position to effect leadership or change in the chamber itself.
Major Political Parties
The following is a list of the current major political parties of the Russian Empire. At present, these parties are the White Guard, Constitutional Democratic Party, and the Russian Social Democratic Labor. The White Guard were the first to come to power after the results of the first Imperial election in 1923. It was not until 1958 that White Guard power was broken when the Constitutional Democatics came to power. For the next 34 years the Russian Empire was ruled by either the Constitutional Democratics or the Social Democratic Laborists following their first victory in 1963. The White Guard would not return to power until the 1992 election, following the end of the Cold War and the Russian Unification War.
The White Guard
|Founder||Pyotr Nikolayevich Wrangel|
|Political Ideology||Nationalism, Monarchism, Fiscal conservatism, Social conservatism|
|Party Strength||Major Party|
|Student wing||Student Guard|
|Youth wing||Youth Guard|
Belaya Gvardiya (White Guard) is a major political party within the Russian Empire. The party was founded by Nikolay Wrangel in honor of the White Army led by Nikolay's descendant, Baron Pyotr Wrangel. The party's headquarters is located in Saint Petersburg but they also have a major office in Moscow.
The history of the White Guard party takes into account several different movements near the end of the First Russian Empire. Influenced by both the Party of Democratic Reform and the Russian Monarchist Party, the party considers its strongest historical ties are with the The White movement. The White movement and its military arm, the White Army, was a loose confederation of Anti-Communist forces that fought the Bolsheviks in the Russian Civil War (1917–1922/3) and, to a lesser extent, continued operating as militarized associations both outside and within Russian borders until roughly the Second World War. Remnants and continuations of the movement, some of which only had narrow support, endured within the wider White émigré community until after the fall of Communism. The White movement was the chief opponent of the Red Army. They said they would bring law and order and the salvation of Russia, fighting against traitors, barbarians, and murderers. They often acted in response to previous Red aggression and worked to remove Soviet organizations and functionaries in White-controlled territory. Overall, the White Army was nationalistic and rejected ethnic particularism and separatism. The White Army generally believed in a united multinational Russia, and opposed separatists who wanted to create nation-states instead of the Tsarist Russian Empire. Many of the White leaders were conservative. They accepted autocracy while being suspicious of politics (which they characterized as consisting of speeches, elections, and party activities). Aside from being anti-Bolshevik and patriotic, the Whites had no set ideology or main leader. The White Armies did acknowledge a single provisional head of state, the so-called Supreme Governor of Russia, but this post was prominent only under the leadership of Alexander Kolchak.
Due to a lack of true consolidation in the White Movement, White forces were constantly defeated during the early years Russian Civil War. A decisive win for the White Movement came at the Battle of Oryol. In October of 1919, General Denikin launched his offensive on Moscow, which had become the new Russian capital for the Communists. At the Battle of Oryol, the White Army gained a victory against Red Army and now positioned themselves only 300 miles from Moscow. This position forced Bolshevik leaders, against the insistence of Leon Trotsky, to send Red Army forces back to Moscow in order to prepare for its defense. This move allowed General Nikolai Yudenich and his White Army forces to successful attack and reconquer the former Imperial Capital of Saint Petersburg for White Forces. However, due to the costs of the taking of Saint Petersburg, the White Army failed in sending the necessary supplies and manpower that General Denikin requested on his attempt to take Moscow. The attempt failed and General Denikin was killed along with most of his White Army forces in Southern Russia. In January 1920. Alexander Kolchak, Supreme Leader and Commander-in-Chief of All Russian Land and Sea Forces, resigned from his position and passed it on to General Yudenich, the last of the Big Three Generals of the White Army. The Follwoing year, the Civil War became a struggle between stagnate Red and White lines. This coupled with the economic devestation that the war brought Russia forced Red and White Army officials to sue for peace. The Treaty of Moscow was officially signed in October 1922, ending the Russian Civil War and dividing Russia between a Imperial North cented in Saint Petersburg and a Soviet South, centered around Moscow.
Following the Russian Civil War, the Whites consolidated power in Saint Petersburg and called for a zemsky sobor to discuss the creation of a new government for a new empire. It was the zamsky sobor which elected a new heir to the Russian throne, the senior most member of the Romanov family which had survived the Civil War, Grand Duke Cyril Vladimirovich. Grand Duke Cyril was crowned after accepting the Russian Empire first constitution, the Fundamental Laws of the Russian Empire, which enshrined a more powerful parliament while also allowing the Russian Emperor to retain some executive power within the government. With the enshrining of a new constitution, political parties began forming. Many of the more political and intellectuals among the White Army, including the leading voice of Pyotr Nikolayevich Wrangel came together to form the White Guard. Though many within the White Guard had hoped to support the national hero General Yudenich as the party's candidate for Prime Minister, General Yudenich accepted instead the position of head of the new Imperial Military. It was a natural choice for him, having no political desires of his own. Instead, the party supported Sergei Sergeievich Salazkin, former Minister of Education during the Provisional Government years before the Civil War. Encouraging General Yudenich to use his popularity to help Salazkin's success, the White Guard one the first election of the new Russian Empire in 1923, forming its first government after Salazkin's appointment as Prime Minister my Emperor Cyril. This victory would secure a White Guard controlled government for the next 36 years. The White Guard would be the leading party of the Russian Empire during the Second World War until the election of 1958, when the Kadets would finally defeat them for majority rule. The Cold War era would be a time of disappointment for the White Guard as many saw them as a relect of the old world. It would be during this time that the party would come to reinvent themselves, expanding their core base of supporters. These efforts kept the party relavent to survive the Cold War, leading to a slow revival which colminated in their first electoral victory in 34 years, in 1992. Today the party remains a majority political force with the Russian Empire and the strongest of its concervative voices in government.
The party relies on a platform that has remained consist throughout its history, with only few changes made to keep itself relavent. Considered the strongest of the conservative bloc of political parties, the White Guard advocates an emphasis towards the traditional family and social stability as well as favoring of limiting immigration. The party is also committed to the general principle of reducing direct taxation whilst arguing that the country needs a dynamic and competitive economy, with the proceeds of any growth shared between both tax reduction and extra public investment. The party advocates both a strong military budget as well as a foreign policy dedicated to alliances between Russia and other like-minded and politically similar nations. They pledge their support of a healthcare system that is primarily privacy based, but supported with subsidies from the government to keep cost down. The party also supports many reforms to education that would emphasis Russo-centric education as well as policies that would make it easier for pupils to be searched for contraband items, granting of anonymity to teachers accused by pupils, and the banning of expelled pupils being returned to schools via appeal panels. In higher education they support tax-related programs that would help off-set the cost of university tuition. Economically, the White Guard strongly believes that free markets and individual achievement are the primary factors behind economic prosperity. To this end, they advocate in favor of laissez-faire economics, fiscal conservatism, and the elimination of government run welfare programs in favor of private sector nonprofits and encouraging personal responsibility.
The Constitutional Democratic Party
|Founder||Konstantin Kavelin, Boris Chicherin, and Pavel Miliukov|
|Political Ideology||Social Liberalism, Constitutional Monarchism, Third Way, Progressivism|
|Party Strength||Major Party|
The Konstitutsionno-demokraticheskaya partiya (Constitutional Democratic Party or Kadets)is a major political party within the Russian Empire. The party was founded in 1905 with Konstantin Kavelin's and Boris Chicherin's writings forming the theoretical basis of the party's platform. Historian Pavel Miliukov was the party's first leader. The Kadets' base of support were intellectuals and professionals; though 60% of Kadets were nobles. University professors and lawyers were particularly prominent within the party. Today, the party holds its headquarters in Saint Petersburg.
The Constitutional Democratic Party was formed in Moscow on October 12 or 18, 1905 at the height of the Russian Revolution of 1905 when Tsar Nicholas II was forced to sign the October Manifesto granting basic civil liberties. The Kadets were to the immediate Left of the Octobrists, another new formed party organized at the same time. Unlike the Octobrists, who were committed to constitutional monarchy from the start, the Kadets were at first ambiguous on the subject, demanding universal suffrage (even women's suffrage) and a Constituent Assembly that would determine the country's form of government. This radicalism was despite the fact 60% of Kadets were nobles. The Kadets were one of the parties invited by the reform-minded Prime Minister Sergei Witte to join his cabinet in OctoberNovember 1905, but the negotiations broke down over the Kadets' radical demands and Witte's refusal to drop notorious reactionaries like Petr Nikolayevich Durnovo from the cabinet. With some socialist and revolutionary parties boycotting the election to the First State Duma in February 1906, the Kadets received 37% of the urban vote and won over 30% of the seats in the Duma. They interpreted their electoral win as a mandate and allied with the left-leaning peasant Trudovik faction, forming a majority in the Duma. When their declaration of legislative intent was rejected by the government at the start of the parliamentary session in April, they adopted a radical oppositionist line, denouncing the government at every opportunity. On July 9, the government announced that the Duma was dysfunctional and dissolved it. In response, 120 Kadet and 80 Trudovik and Social Democrat deputies went to Vyborg (then a part of the autonomous Grand Duchy of Finland and thus beyond the reach of Russian police) and responded with the Vyborg Manifesto, written by Miliukov. In the manifesto, they called for passive resistance, non-payment of taxes and draft avoidance. The appeal failed to have an effect on the population at large and proved both ineffective and counterproductive, leading to a ban on its authors', including the entire Kadet leadership, participation in future Dumas. This was further accentuated by the force of the tsar trying to control and deteriorate the power of the Duma. It was not until later in 1906, with the revolution in retreat, that the Kadets abandoned revolutionary and republican aspirations and declared their support for a constitutional monarchy. The government, however, remained suspicious of the Kadets until the fall of the monarchy in 1917. During the February Revolution of 1917, Kadet deputies in the Duma and other prominent Kadets formed the core of the newly formed Russian Provisional Government with five portfolios. Although exercising limited power in a situation known as dual power, the provisional government failures led to the Kadets becoming a liability for their socialist coalition partners. With the Bolshevik seizure of power on October 25 or 26, 1917 and subsequent transfer of political power to the Soviets, Kadet and other anti-Bolshevik newspapers were closed down and the party was suppressed by the new regime. During the Russian Civil War, some Kadets were aligned with the White Movement, though much of the official leadership went into exile. The Russian Civil War ended in October 1922, with the signing of the Treaty of Moscow. A new Russian Empire was formed in November 1922 after the creation of a new constitution, the Fundamental Laws of the Russian Empire. During the zamsky sobor which eventually formulated the new constitution, Kadets became a powerful and influential voice only outspoken by the more hard-line monarchists of the White Guard. During the first parliamentary elections of 1923 the Kadets had reformed their party, becoming the second largest party in the parliament just behind the White Guard. In 1958, the Kadets would finally win the majority from the White Guard, going on to be a major leading political party through much of the Cold War Era (losing in small gaps to the Trudoviks throughout this era) until the White Guard regained the majority in 1992.
Today, the Kadets have a platform that makes them a much more liberal alternative, to the more right-winged monarchists of the White Guard. Supporters of the monarchy, Kadets generally support greater restrictions on the Emperor and his ability to lead in the executive. They support more autonomy for the Imperial Council of Ministers and making them more responsible to the Imperial Assembly. The economic policy of the Kadets is based on liberal and third-way economics, to the extent that Kadets embrace fiscal conservatism and advocate some replacement of welfare with workfare. They also have stronger preferences for market solutions to traditional problems while rejecting pure laissez-faire economics and other libertarian positions. Kadets call for a state regulatory policy which creates the appropriate framework for this but does not distort the market through excessive state interventionism. Their main objective is to create jobs by improving the investment in the economy. This will be achieved through bureaucracy reduction, privatization, deregulation, reduction of subsidies and a reform of the collective bargaining. The party sees globalization as an opportunity creator and they believe the government debt is to be reduced while they strive for a balanced budget without creating new debt. In the tax policy, Kadets call for a simpler tax law akin to a flat-tax system. They also support tax cuts designed to increase the purchasing power of workers and to stimulate the economy. Kadets rejects the nationwide minimum wage and instead call for wage ceilings to be introduced which pay attention to the specific characteristics of the respective regions and industries. In healthcare, Kadets argue for a reduction of bureaucratic Regulations. Also the physical self-determination is particularly emphasized. For example, each human being should also have the right in the context of medical treatment to freely determine their biology. In addition, Kadets aim to legalize cannabis. Socially, Kadets support the legal equality of different forms of living together and argue that marriage between husband and wife should not be preferred to other forms of living together. Same-sex couples are to be given the same rights as heterosexual pairs. The opening of marriage for same-sex couples is demanded. In terms of national defense, Kadets support the military but argue that some reductions can be made to make the military more cost effective and seek a global arms-reduction through international efforts.
The Russian Social Democratic Labor Party
|Political Ideology||Social Democracy|
|Party Strength||Major Party|
|Party Colors||Red and Black|
The Rossiyskaya sotsial-demokraticheskaya rabochaya partiya (Russian Social Democratic Labor Party or Trudoviks), is a major political party within the Russian Empire. The party was originally founded by Julius Martov in 1912 and was resurrected in its current state by a descendant of Julius, Sergei Martov shortly after the crowning of Emperor Paul II. The party has its headquarters in Saint Petersburg but also operates a large complex in Moscow and other major Russian cities world wide.
The history of the RSDR traces its roots to the original party of the same name. The Russian Social Democratic Labor Party was a revolutionary socialist political party formed in 1898 in Minsk to unite the various revolutionary organizations of the Russian Empire into one party. Before the Second Congress, a young intellectual named Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov joined the party, better known by his pseudonym — Vladimir Lenin. In 1902 he had published What is to be Done?, outlining his view of the party's task and methodology — to form 'the vanguard of the proletariat.' He advocated a disciplined, centralized party of committed activists. In 1903, at the Second Congress of the party, the RSDR split into two irreconcilable factions on November 17: the Bolsheviks, headed by Lenin, and the Mensheviks, headed by Julius Martov. By 1912, the General Jewish Labor Bund in Lithuania, Poland and Russia became a federated part of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party (Menshevik). After the October Revolution, differences emerged inside the party. In 1921 in the last years of the Russian Civil War, the party issued the Platform of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party. It called for liquidating the political monopoly of the Communist Party (The Bolsheviks by this time), which was identified as something quite different from the dictatorship of the proletariat, privatizations of large sectors of industry and giving full voting rights to the peasantry and those treated by the Soviet government as the bourgeois class. From the beginning of 1921, after the Kronstadt Uprising, the 10th Communist Party congress banned the Mensheviks, forcing the top leadership of the Menshevik faction of the RSDR to flee Moscow for the Russian territory held by the White Army. Initially the White Guard arrested and detained the Leftiest of the Mensheviks, such as leader Julius Martov, while allowing limited freedoms to the right-leaning Mensheviks who also arrived.
Folllowing the end of the Civil War, the signing of the Treaty of Moscow, and the passing of the Fundamental Laws of the Russian Empire; Menshevik Leaders were released and even allowed to participate in the first elections. Uniting many of the Socialist leaning political factions who found themselves in the new Russian Empire, a renew Russian Social Democratic Labor Party. In a tactic designed to attract the most possible votes, the knew Trudoviks supported Fyodor Ilyich Dan as their choice for Prime Minster. The party also supported a more moderate platform, attracting those who were disenfranchised by the hard-line policies of both the White Guard and the former Bolsheviks. This attracted many in the lower classes but was not enough to win the election, putting the Trudoviks in third in the 1923 election behind the White Guard and Kadets. Despite their intial failure, the Trudoviks used the 1923 elections to begin rebranding themselves and politically distancing themselves from the Communists of the Soviet Union. This was a slow process, leading the limited success during the next few years as the White guard held a monopoly on political power in the Russian Empire. In 1958, the Kadets finally broke that monopoly, gaining power and proving that the White Guard could be beat. This inspired the Trudoviks and their supporters who used this era of liberalization to highlight their own political platforms. Gaining furher support from the lower classes as well as the emerging middle class, the Trudoviks finally broke into power with their win in 1963. Throughout the remaining years of the Cold War, the Trudoviks fought mainly against the Kadets for power in the Russian Empire. It wasn't until the failture of the 1980s from both the Trudoviks and the Kadets, that the White Guard regain power. Despite this, the Trudoviks remain a powerful voice for moderate socialism in Russian Imperial Politics.
The platform of the party has changed dramatically over the years, especially during the early decades of the Russian Empire as the party distanced itself from their Bolshevik cousins. The party advocates a peaceful and evolutionary transition of the economy to socialism through progressive social reform of capitalism. It promotes extending democratic decision-making beyond political democracy to include economic democracy to guarantee employees and other economic stakeholders sufficient rights of co-determination. It supports a mixed economy that opposes the excesses of capitalism such as inequality, poverty, and oppression of various groups, while rejecting both a totally free market or a fully planned economy. The RSDR is also advocates of universal social rights to attain universally accessible public services such as education, health care, workers' compensation, and other services, including child care and care for the elderly. The RSDR is connected with the trade union labor movements and supports collective bargaining rights for workers.
Minor Political Parties
The following is a list of the current minority political parties of the Russian Empire. Minority parties weren't established before the Reunification War of 1992. Before then, Russia was a three-party state between the White Guard, Kadets, and Trudoviks. Following Russia being united under the Imperial Government, the Russian Empire saw a rise in new ideas and politcal opinons. Many of these ideas and opinions stemmed from the old Communist regime of the Soviet Union. Almost overnight the Russian Empire found itself with new citizens, some ex-communist officials not apart of the ruling elite and others apart of the underground thinkers who had previously been suppressed by the Soviet Union. Under the freedom of the Russian Empire, these thinkers were allowed to organize themselves into knew political parties, parties which have come to concentrate as a new minority grouping.
|Political Ideology||Liberalism, Sustainable development, Constitutionalism, Pacifism, Popular sovereignty|
|Party Strength||Minor Party|
|Student wing||Loyal Patriot Republicans|
|Youth wing||Republican Youth|
The Respublikanskaya partiya (Republican Party) is a minor political party of the Russian Empire. It is headquartered in Saint Petersburg but also holds offices in Moscow. The party was founded by Mikhail Gormov and its origins lie in previous Democratic movements in the former Soviet Union that began emerging during the glasnost period. While previously suppressed by the Communist Party, these democratic movements began emerging during the final years of the Soviet Union and eventually flourished once these political thinkers found themselves in the Russian Empire. The major platform policy of the Republican Party is constitutional reform and reducing the current powers of the monarchy to that of a ceremonial figure and strengthening the powers of the Prime Minister, making the Prime Minister separate from that of the office of the Emperor.
The specific origins of the Republican Patriot Front comes from their formation before the 1998 elections.
United Imperial Union
|Party Strength||Minor Party|
|Student wing||Imperial Unionists of Tomorrow|
|Youth wing||Imperial Youth|
Orthodox Christian Alliance
|Political Position||Center right|
|Party Strength||Minor Party|
|Student wing||Young Christian Alliance|
|Youth wing||Orthodox Youth|
The (Orthodox Christian Alliance is a political party
Russian Environmentalist Party
|Political Ideology||Green politics|
|Party Strength||Minor Party|
The Russkiy Ekolog partiya (Russian Environmentalist Party) or simply, Green Party, is a minor political party within the Russian Empire. The party was founded by Oleg Kerkashov shortly after the coronation of Emperor Paul II. The party holds headquarters in Saint Petersburg though they also operate offices in Moscow and a few other major cities. The party has served as a voice for environmental policies and general conservation within the Empire. Most modern day recycling programs and major national parks owe their continued existence to policies pursued and endorsed by the Greens.
The history of the party begins with Oleg Kerkashov, founder and major inspiration behind much of the party's ideology. Kerkashov was born into a family of farmers with his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather all being farmers. Indeed as far back as anyone knows, the Kerkashov family has served Russia as proud and successful farmers. However, coming into the modern era the Kerkashov family was quick to recognize the ill effects the modern, industrialist society had had on the agrarian lifestyle there family had enjoyed for generations. A born orator and leader, Oleg Kerkashov sought to change this and ran successfully for a seat on his local municipal council. His initial promises and plans were to employ safe and effective policies designed to cut harmful waste produced by local manufacturing companies and improve the quality of the local environment. Daunting as the task was, Kerkashov worked tirelessly with industrial leaders in his hometown to find ways to cut harmful waste not not impeding on profits. Much of this time was a trial and error period of Kerkashov but once the right formula was achieve, success was quick to follow. Following local support, Kerkashov ran for his local seat to the national parliament of Russia at the time. Though both the White Guard and RSDR were well-established parties at the time, Kerkashov's own ideology differed greatly from either political party. So instead, Kerkashov instead used his own personal finances to register a political party of his own, the Environmentalist party. To Kerkashov's surprise his party attracted many and soon the party was an official political entity, with Kerkashov as the party's biggest success story after he won the seat in the Duma at the time. This success continued for Kerhashov for three terms in office before he stepped down to take on a party leadership role. Kerkashov would remain party leader for many years until his death a few years after the coronation of Emperor Alexei I. Various leaderships continued to push the party forward and the Greens remains a voice within the Duma.
With the assassination of Emperor Alexei I, implications that members of parliament aided the assassin brough the dissolution of parliament by Emperor Ivan VIII. Afterwards many politicians and parties were detained. While there were many who attempted to implicate the Greens as accomplices to the plot by the Communists, these implications were later found to be factless rumors and most party members were acquitted of any wrong doing.