One of the more significant results of the election was that Putin got 92.2% in Crimea and 90.2% in Sevastopol.
Moreover, these results were entirely fair.
Here are the relevant graphs from Sergey Shpilkin, who approximates electoral fraud by the extent to which the vote for Putin becomes disproportional relative to the rest of the candidates as turnout increases.
This doesn’t happen at all in the Crimea; in fact, Putin’s share of the vote marginally decreases with higher turnout there.
Here is the same data in 3D format, via Dmitry Kobak.
The big cluster is the (non-falsified) mass of Russian results, the “comet tail” to the 100/100 point reflects falsified results, while the small, distinct at 65% turnout/90% Putin results represent the Crimea.
Consequently, we can consider the numerous opinion polls that have consistently shown 90%+ of Crimea supporting joining Russia to be electorally certified.
One curious thing about the Crimean vote is that Sobchak [1.6%] did unusually well there, much better than in the rest of the Russian South – no mean achievement, that, considering how the overwhelming vote for Putin pushed down everyone else. Moreover, she almost did as well as Zhirinovsky [1.8%], a pattern only observed in liberal Moscow and Saint-Petersburg amongst the ethnic Russian regions.
What explains this? Crimean Tatars.
Sobchak’s share of the vote.
Crimean Tatars as percentage of the population.
Based on results from Crimean Tatar settlements, it seems that Crimean Tatars tended to have low turnout (around 30%-35%, or half the Russian rate), with those that did turn up, voting 75%-90% for Putin, 5%-15% for Sobchak, and giving everyone else low single digits.
Assuming similar levels of general political apathy as in Russians, it would seem that approximately half of Crimean Tatars are for Russia, as proxied by Putin, while the other half does not want to engage in “his”/Russia’s election.
This would seem to confirm my polls-based assessment of Crimean Tatar attitudes towards Russia being characterized not by uniform hostility, as the Western media would have you believe about Russia’s so-called occupation, but by division and ambiguity.
This would also seem to be a good opportunity to address a historical what-if.
It’s not like, say, the inhabitants of Dnepropetrovsk – one of the regions least supportive of union with Russia in the territories of the putative Novorossiya – was any more anti-Russian than the Crimean Tatars in 2014. To the contrary, support for union with Russia was almost certainly higher even in Dnepropetrovsk [15%] than amongst the Crimean Tatars. So what reason is there to think that if Russia had indeed annexed them that they would going into the forests, as opposed to just not turning up to elections in large numbers and giving Sobchak 10% of the vote?