President of the Soviet Union

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President of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics

Президент Союза Советских Социалистических Республик
State Emblem of the Soviet Union.svg
Residence Kremlin Senate, Moscow [1]
Appointer Direct election, [2]
Congress of People's Deputies [3]
Formation15 March 1990 (1990-03-15)
First holder Mikhail Gorbachev
Final holderMikhail Gorbachev
Abolished25 December 1991 (1991-12-25)

The President of the Soviet Union (Russian : Президент Советского Союза, Prezident Sovetskogo Soyuza), officially called President of the USSR (Russian :Президент СССР) [2] or President of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (Russian :Президент Союза Советских Социалистических Республик), was the head of state of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics from 15 March 1990 to 25 December 1991. Mikhail Gorbachev was the only person to occupy the office. Gorbachev was also General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union between March 1985 and August 1991. He derived an increasingly greater share of his power from his position as president until he finally resigned as General Secretary after the 1991 coup d'état attempt.

Russian language East Slavic language

Russian is an East Slavic language, which is official in the Russian Federation, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, as well as being widely used throughout Eastern Europe, the Baltic states, the Caucasus and Central Asia. It was the de facto language of the Soviet Union until its dissolution on 25 December 1991. Although nearly three decades have passed since the breakup of the Soviet Union, Russian is used in official capacity or in public life in all the post-Soviet nation-states, as well as in Israel and Mongolia.

A head of state is the public persona who officially represents the national unity and legitimacy of a sovereign state. Depending on the country's form of government and separation of powers, the head of state may be a ceremonial figurehead or concurrently the head of government. In a parliamentary system, such as India, the head of state usually has mostly ceremonial powers, with a separate head of government. However in some parliamentary systems, like South Africa, there is an executive president that is both head of state and head of government. Likewise, in some parliamentary systems the head of state is not the head of government, but still has significant powers, for example Morocco. In contrast, a semi-presidential system, such as France, has both heads of state and government as the de facto leaders of the nation. Meanwhile, in presidential systems such as the United States, the head of state is also the head of government.

Mikhail Gorbachev 20th-century General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union

Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev is a Russian and formerly Soviet politician. The eighth and last leader of the Soviet Union, he was General Secretary of its governing Communist Party from 1985 until 1991. He was the country's head of state from 1988 until 1991, serving as Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet from 1988 to 1989, Chairman of the Supreme Soviet from 1989 to 1990, and President of the Soviet Union from 1990 to 1991. Ideologically, he initially adhered to Marxism-Leninism although by the early 1990s had moved toward social democracy.

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The presidency was an executive post, based on a mixture of the U.S. and French presidencies. [4]

President of the United States Head of state and of government of the United States

The president of the United States (POTUS) is the head of state and head of government of the United States of America. The president directs the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces.

President of France head of state of France

The President of France, officially the President of the French Republic is the executive head of state of France in the French Fifth Republic. In French terms, the presidency is the supreme magistracy of the country.

Prior to the creation of the post of president, the de jure head of state of the Soviet Union was the chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet, who was often called the "president" by non-Soviet sources. For most of the Soviet Union's existence, all effective executive political power was in the hands of the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, with the Chairman of the Presidium exercising largely symbolic and figurehead duties. Starting with Leonid Brezhnev in 1977, the last four General Secretaries—Brezhnev, Yuri Andropov, Konstantin Chernenko, and Gorbachev—simultaneously served as de jure head of state during their time in office.

Presidium of the Supreme Soviet Soviet governmental institution

The Presidium of the Supreme Soviet was a Soviet governmental institution – a permanent body of the Supreme Soviets (parliaments). This body was of the all-Union level, as well as in all Soviet republics and autonomous republics. Structure and functions of the presidiums in these republics were virtually identical. The presidiums were elected by the Supreme Soviet to act on its behalf while the Supreme Soviet was not in session. By the 1936 and 1977 Soviet Constitution the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet served as the collective head of state of the USSR.

The executive is the organ exercising authority in and holding responsibility for the governance of a state. The executive executes and enforces law.

Communist Party of the Soviet Union Ruling political party of the Soviet Union

The Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU) was the founding and ruling political party of the Soviet Union. The CPSU was the sole governing party of the Soviet Union until 1990, when the Congress of People's Deputies modified Article 6 of the most recent 1977 Soviet constitution, which had granted the CPSU a monopoly over the political system.

The president was initially elected by the Congress of People's Deputies and served as ex officio chairman of that body, but all future elections were to have been by popular vote. During the election of the president several candidates were nominated, among leading contenders were KGB persona Vadim Bakatin and Premier Nikolai Ryzhkov.

Congress of Peoples Deputies of the Soviet Union

The Congress of People's Deputies of the Soviet Union was the highest body of state authority of the Soviet Union from 1989 to 1991.

Vadim Bakatin Soviet politician

Vadim Viktorovich Bakatin is a former Soviet politician who served as the last chairman of the KGB in 1991. He is the last surviving former chairman of this organization. He was appointed to dismantle the KGB, but he was unable to control this organization and to fulfill the task due to political reasons. He was able to fulfill plan of KGB disintegration into separate organizations. He ran for the Russian presidency as an independent candidate in June 1991.

Nikolai Ryzhkov Soviet official and a Russian politician

Nikolai Ivanovich Ryzhkov is a former Soviet official who became a Russian politician following the dissolution of the Soviet Union. He served as the last Chairman of the Council of Ministers. Responsible for the cultural and economic administration of the Soviet Union during the late Gorbachev Era, Ryzhkov was succeeded as premier by Valentin Pavlov in 1991. The same year, he lost his seat on the Presidential Council, going on to become Boris Yeltsin's leading opponent in the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (RSFSR) 1991 presidential election.

The Vice President of the Soviet Union was Gennady Yanayev, the only person to occupy that office. He was also the leader of the Gang of Eight which attempted the August coup, and declared himself Acting President of the Soviet Union on 19 August 1991. After three days the coup collapsed and Gorbachev was restored. He held the office up to the country's dissolution.

Gennady Yanayev USSR politician

Gennady Ivanovich Yanayev was a Soviet politician who served as the first and only Vice President of the Soviet Union. Yanayev's political career spanned the rules of Khrushchev, Brezhnev, Andropov and Chernenko, and culminated during the Gorbachev years. Yanayev was born in Perevoz, Gorky Oblast. After years in local politics, he rose to prominence as Chairman of the All-Union Central Council of Trade Unions, but he also held other lesser posts such as deputy of the Union of Soviet Societies for Friendship and Cultural Relations with Foreign Countries.

In law, when someone is said to be acting in a position it can mean that, the position has not yet been formally created, the person is only occupying the position temporarily to ensure continuity, or the person does not have a mandate.

Dissolution of the Soviet Union Process leading to the late-1991 breakup of the USSR

The dissolution of the Soviet Union occurred on 26 December 1991, officially granting self-governing independence to the Republics of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). It was a result of the declaration number 142-Н of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union. The declaration acknowledged the independence of the former Soviet republics and created the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), although five of the signatories ratified it much later or did not do so at all. On the previous day, 25 December, Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, the eighth and final leader of the USSR, resigned, declared his office extinct and handed over its powers—including control of the Soviet nuclear missile launching codes—to Russian President Boris Yeltsin. That evening at 7:32 p.m., the Soviet flag was lowered from the Kremlin for the last time and replaced with the pre-revolutionary Russian flag.

List

N.PortraitName
(birth–death)
Term of officeTenure
(years and days)
ElectionParty Vice President Prime Ministers
1 RIAN archive 359290 Mikhail Gorbachev (cropped).jpg Mikhail Gorbachev
(1931–)
(88 years old)
15 March
1990
25 December
1991
1 year, 285 days 1990 Communist Party of the
Soviet Union
Office vacant
(15 March 1990 — 27 December 1990)
Nikolai
Ryzhkov
Gennady Yanayev Valentin
Pavlov
Office vacant
(21 August 1991 — 25 December 1991)
Ivan
Silayev

History

Leaders of the Communist party voted on establishing a presidency on February 7, 1990. [5]

The first and only presidential election took place on March 14, 1990. The Congress of People's Deputies decided that they would elect the first president into a five-year term, then turn over presidential elections to the public beginning in the planned 1995 presidential election.

See also

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References

  1. O’Clery, Conor (2011). Moscow, December 25, 1991: The Last Day of the Soviet Union. New York: Public Affairs. p. 120. Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  2. 1 2 1977 Soviet Constitution with amendments of 1989—1990. Chapter 15.1: President of the Soviet Union Archived 2013-02-16 at the Wayback Machine
  3. Soviet Law from 14 March 1990 N 1360-I "On establishment of the Presidency of the Soviet Union and amendments and additions to the Constitution (Basic Law) of the Soviet Union". Article III
  4. "Soviet Union - The U.S.S.R. from 1953 to 1991". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 2018-10-06.
  5. Dobbs, Michael (February 8, 1990). "SOVIET PARTY VOTES TO DROP MONOPOLY ON POWER". The Washington Post. Retrieved March 5, 2019.