The Economist has the following to say about Russia in it´s annual Democracy Index:
Although the formal trappings of democracy remain in place, today’s Russia has been called a “managed” (or “stage managed”) democracy. All the main decisions are made by a small group of insiders. The Duma is now little more than a rubber-stamp parliament; regional governors are appointed directly; the main media are state-controlled; civil society organisations have come under pressure; and the state has increased its hold over the economy. Even though Dmitry Medvedev, Mr Putin’s successor, has adopted a softer style, and has instituted some liberalising changes around the edges of the system, there have been no fundamental reforms during his presidency so far.
The Economist´s view does, of course, not come as a surprise. Everybody knows that Medvedev is only Putin´s puppet.