Strong personalities have long defined Georgian politics. But on October 27, voters will inaugurate a new political order in Tbilisi by selecting a president with limited powers.
In a somewhat ironic twist, Georgia’s 23 presidential candidates haven’t demonstrated a good understanding of the soon-to-be implemented constitutional changes in executive authority. The governing Georgian Dream coalition’s candidate, Giorgi Margvelashvili, a former education minister, appears bent on controlling cabinet nominations. Meanwhile, his main rival, Davit Bakradze, the parliamentary faction leader of outgoing President Mikheil Saaakashvili’s United National Movement, wants 1,000-lari ($600) vouchers for the underprivileged.
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Molly Corso is a freelance journalist who also works as editor of Investor.ge, a monthly publication by the American Chamber of Commerce in Georgia.