MOSCOW - President Dmitry Medvedev urged Russians on Friday to vote "for the future" by electing a strong parliament to maintain stability and said all parties had been treated equally, despite opposition complaints of foul play.
Medvedev is leading Vladimir Putin's United Russia into Sunday's election, but made no direct reference to the party in a pre-election address in his capacity as head of state, although the party's slogan is: "The future belongs to us."
In an apparent reference to the chaos of the 1990s, when parliament was bitterly divided before United Russia's dominance, he said a unified legislature would best be able to defend national interests.
"Will this be a legislative body that is torn by irreconcilable differences and is unable to decide anything, as we have unfortunately already had in our history?" he said in a national address.
"Or will we get a functioning legislature where the majority are responsible politicians who can help raise the quality of life of our people, whose actions will be guided by the voters' interests and national interests?" he said.