There is no major difference in views about Prigozhin between supporters and opponents of an early withdrawal of Russian troops and a peace agreement with Ukraine. Those who favor a “war to a victorious end” are not so inclined to approve of an active combatant turning his columns on Moscow (the approval index was 0.55). But another observation deserves attention: among those who are in favor of an early withdrawal of troops, approval was slightly lower (0.46). It could be that Prigozhin earned the approval of doves thanks to his own critical assessment of the special operation, which he announced
right before the start of the march. It is also possible that doves approved of Prigozhin precisely for his march on Moscow.
Of course, views on Prigozhin’s actions on June 24 play a key role in determining attitudes toward him in general. Those who evaluate the “mutiny” as “a betrayal of the interests of the country” have an almost unanimous, negative attitude toward Prigozhin (0.13); in the other camp that did not see the mutiny as a betrayal, for every opponent of Prigozhin there are more than two of his supporters (2.23).
In the mass consciousness, the march on Moscow obviously made Prigozhin not an ally, but an enemy of Vladimir Putin. Among those who see no one else but Putin as president, the Prigozhin approval index was only 0.47, while among those who would like to see someone else as president, the figure rose to 0.64.Prigozhin as a threat to the ‘who else but Putin’ narrative?
Obviously, when practically nothing changes on the political scene, citizens who do not like such stability might have positive attitudes toward an active player that has suddenly emerged. But those who fear change frown upon that. As Machiavelli noted, for a national leader, the danger is not only people who openly oppose him, but above all those who stand next to him, accumulating support.
For this reason, Prigozhin won approval mainly among those whose assessment of the Russian president’s actions during the mutiny decreased (0.73) or did not change (0.62). Those who highly rated Putin’s actions rate Prigozhin very low, at 0.23. In other words,