A man casts his ballot in Russia’s managed Presidential election in the Pacific city of Vladivostok (AP)

I joined Dublin NewsTalk’s Pat Kenny Show on Friday for a 10-minute analysis of Vladimir Putin’s maneuvers in Russia’s managed Presidential election on March 15-17.

Putin’s “victory” with about 80% of the officially-declared vote is guaranteed. However, I explain that he needs a high turnout to portray the legitimacy of his rule, now approaching 25 years, and his invasion of Ukraine.

I discuss how the Kremlin is managing the ballot, with the disqualification of any serious challenger and State media’s promotion of Putin; the possibility of a protest vote and the risks in doing so; and Putin’s descent into an autocrat denying rights and pursuing the conquest of a neighboring country.