MOSCOW – Russian President Vladimir Putin hasn't said if he is running for a fourth term. But none of the potential candidates hoping to unseat him appear in a position to do so.
The most visible and adept foe of the Putin regime, Alexei Navalny, wants to enter the race but is legally barred. TV host Ksenia Sobchak has tossed her hat in the ring, but no one knows if she can meet the registration requirements or if she's effectively a red herring.
Other possible candidates include a liberal with little national visibility; a fire-breathing nationalist whose repeated runs have produced few votes; and the party leader of the Communists.
Putin is expected to wait until December to state his intentions. The election is scheduled for March.
His approval ratings consistently register 80 percent or higher.