The Constituent Assembly (1917). Elections to the Constituent Assembly
After the February Revolution and the overthrow of the tsarMonarchical Russia became the "republic". The Provisional Government (as they called themselves the new authorities) took the whole burden of government on themselves. By that time, many parties with followers appeared and put forward their program on further restructuring of the state apparatus. In order to hold worthy elections, the Provisional Government organizes the Constituent Assembly. 1917, among other things, becomes famous for the huge turmoil around the preparations for this event. And it was in this year that the first voting took place. The most prominent parties were:
- The Bolsheviks;
Elections to the Constituent Assembly of 1917 began with preparation.
Preparations for elections
The training was attended by representatives of allexisting at that time parties and all kinds of associations. The printing house produced large circulations of literature, leaflets, propaganda posters and others. On the streets, polls were conducted. Also, various speeches were held in order to acquaint the people with the politics of this or that party.
The event promised to be democratic. What has not been until now in the Russian Empire. Any citizen from 20 years old or a person serving in the army, at the age of 18, could become a voter. Also, women could participate in elections. What was in the novel is not that in Russia, but in most countries. Exceptions were Denmark, New Zealand, Norway and some states of America, where women had equal rights with men.
Elections to the Constituent Assembly of 1917passed in several constituencies, to which the country was divided. The deputy quota was allocated at the rate of one for two hundred thousand people. The only exception was Siberia. The local calculation was carried out for one hundred and seventy-nine thousand people.
The principle of proportionality, characteristic ofselection in the Constituent Assembly of 1917, was borrowed from the Belgians. And the main feature of this system was that, in addition to the majority, a minority of the population is also allowed. For this purpose, about twelve constituencies with a majority system of elections characteristic of them were organized in small districts.
Elections to the Constituent Assembly of 1917 took place in November. This event lasted no more than three days.
Results of elections
After the elections to the Constituent AssemblyIn 1917, the results showed that the Socialist-Revolutionaries were leading, gaining about 50% of the vote. In second place were the Bolsheviks. Their percentage of votes did not exceed 25. The lower places were Mensheviks and Cadets.
About 44.5 million people voted in total.
Elimination of the Cadet Party
The Bolsheviks, under public pressure, do notprevented the holding of elections to the Constituent Assembly of 1917, but suffered defeat there. In order to somehow reduce the number of their competitors, they prepared a decree, subsequently approved by the Council of People's Commissars and tells that the Cadet Party is a party of the enemies of the people. After that, the Cadets were deprived of their mandates.
Then they were arrested and shot. Left-wing Socialist-Revolutionaries wanted to help them, but the Sovnarkom completely forbade them to do so, referring to the same decree. Later, Kokoshkin, the leader of the Cadet Party, was killed. The Constituent Assembly (1917) passed without the presence of the Cadets. In addition to Kokoshkin, the same night, Shingarev, the leader of the Constitutional Democratic Party, was shot.
Dispersal of the Constituent Assembly, or "The Guard is tired"
After a series of repressions against the figures from theother parties, the Bolsheviks made a loud statement in one of the newspapers. The newspaper Pravda at the time described in detail the activities of the deputies who are members of the Constituent Assembly (1917). In Russia this newspaper enjoyed the greatest popularity. Imagine the surprise when it published a statement by the leaders of the Bolsheviks, threatening to consolidate their power by revolutionary actions, if it is not recognized at the meeting.
Nevertheless, the meeting took place. Lenin's declaration "on the working people" never received recognition, which led to the fact that at 3 o'clock in the morning the Bolsheviks left the Tauride Palace, where the meeting was held. An hour later, the Left Socialist-Revolutionaries retreated after them. The remaining parties with Chairman Chernov, elected by a majority vote, adopted documents concerning:
- the law on land as a public property;
- conducting negotiations with the belligerents;
- the proclamation of Russia as a democratic republic.
However, none of these documents was adoptedthe Bolsheviks. Moreover, the next day, none of the deputies who decided them, was not admitted to the Tauride Palace. The very same meeting was dispersed by the sailor-anarchist Zheleznyakov with the words "I will ask to stop the meeting, the guard is tired and wants to sleep." This phrase went down in history.
Neither elections to the deputies, nor the convocation of the Constituent Assembly of 1917 led to anything. Everything was already sealed by the Bolsheviks. The very same meeting was approved by them for demonstration purposes.
The further actions of the participants in the meeting unleashed a revolutionary situation in the country.
Despite the fact that the right-wing parties of the Constituent Assemblymeetings were banned, the White Movement's goal was a new convocation and holding of the Constituent Assembly, but not the one that Zheleznyak stopped. Since the first (the same last) Constituent Assembly was wholly and completely controlled by the Bolsheviks.