Russia has been struggling to come to terms with the ethno- federal structure it inherited from the USSR Central and regional political actors have sought to restructure federal relations in a way that marks a break from the pseudo- federalism of the past, and both the 1992 Federation Treaty and the 1993 Constitution of the Russian Federation declared the establishment of a "federal democracy." This article investigates the process of refederalization by examining debates over the idea of federalism in Russia. Despite an initial wide-ranging discussion federalism is increasingly sea in strategic terms by Political elites. The federal system is asymmetrical and bureaucratic, and it is based on a series of treaties between the cater and constituent units, rather than on an effective constitution that binds the center and regions together.
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