Putin submits endorsement papers to election authorities

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Russian President Vladimir Putin has submitted his endorsement papers to election authorities.

Putin is running for his fourth term in office as an independent candidate. The law requires all independents to secure an endorsement from at least 500 people. If given the green light, the candidate will then be allowed to collect signatures necessary to be allowed on the ballot.

Putin's visit to the Central Election Commission on Wednesday comes a day after a group of his supporters, ranging from lawmakers to athletes, signed up to his nomination.

Putin's most formidable foe Alexei Navalny submitted his papers on Sunday but the bid was rejected Monday because of a criminal conviction he and supporters consider political retribution.

With approval ratings around 80 percent, Putin poised to easily win the March vote.