Russian Constituent Assembly

Russian Constituent Assembly


Russian Constituent Assembly

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The All Russian Constituent Assembly (Всероссийское Учредительное Собрание, Vserossiiskoe Uchreditelnoe Sobranie) was a constitutional body convened in Russia after the October Revolution of 1917. It is generally reckoned as the first democratically elected legislative body of any kind in Russian history. It met for 13 hours, from 4 p.m. to 5 a.m., 18–19 January 1918 (NS), whereupon it was dissolved by the Bolshevik-Left SR coalition government. <!-- -->


A democratically-elected Constituent Assembly to create a Russian constitution was one of the main demands of all Russian revolutionary parties prior to the Russian Revolution of 1905. In 1906, the Tsar decided to grant basic civil liberties and hold elections for a newly created legislative body, the State Duma. However, the Duma was never authorized to write a new constitution, much less abolish the monarchy. Moreover, the Duma's powers were falling into the hands of the Constitutional Democrats and not the Marxist Socialists. The government dissolved the Duma, as was their legal agreement, in July 1906 and, after a new election, in June 1907. The final election law written by the government after the second dissolution on June 3, 1907 favored the landed and ruling classes. What little the Duma could do after 1907 was often vetoed by the Tsar or the appointed upper house of the Russian parliament. The Duma was therefore widely seen as unrepresentative of the lower...
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