In a Levada poll released Thursday, 65 percent said they expected the protests to continue, although they differed on how likely the protests were to intensify or spread. The poll, conducted May 25-29 among 1,604 people across Russia, has a margin of error of 3.4 percentage points.
The bill was rushed through the Kremlin-controlled parliament this week in an effort to get it in place before Tuesday’s big protest. Putin’s signature could come as soon as Friday.
Some opposition leaders held out hope that Putin would refuse to sign it. Others, however, said they had no illusions, pointing to a comment by Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov after the violence on the eve of the inauguration. Protesters who hurt riot police, he said, “should have their livers smeared on the asphalt.”
It was the kind of language that Putin likes.
• Irina Titova in St. Petersburg contributed to this report.
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