Sunday, June 24, 2018

Very quick summary on Turkey

As my long-time followers will know, I sometimes get long bouts of writers block; this is one of them. As such to give everyone a very quick run-down of today's Turkish election, I've decided to post a very quick summary on the grounds that having something up is better than nothing.

Turkey's recently changed its constitution to give the President a lot more power.

In the Presidential race, Erdogan (the guy who has run the country for the past decade) is likely to win. His two main rivals are Ince from the CHP and Aksener from IYI.

While Aksener does better in polls against Erdogan in a second round than Ince does, Erdogan still has the clear edge, and will likely emerge as the winner no matter what.

Erdogan's power is the AKP, and, as mentioned, he and his party have been the government since 2003. Erdogan's coalition partner is the MHP, a nationalist party.

MHP, however, suffered a major split recently, and IYI is the splinter party. It is more moderate and anti-Erdogan. Mrs. Aksener is its presidential candidate. The CHP is the "founding" party of Turkey, and the party Ataturk belonged to; it is considered social-democratic in nature.

Turkey has a notoriously high threshold in order to get elected to Parliament, 10%. In the last election, HDP, which is supported by most Kurds, passed the threshold. HDP is expected to do so again. HDP is not contesting this election in any coalition.

AKP and MHP, the government, is contesting in a coalition called the People's Alliance. By doing so, MHP will win seats despite polling near 6%.

Facing them is the National Alliance coalition, which includes both the CHP and IYI. Also included are SP and DP.

The most interesting thing about the DP is its logo is based on a mispronunciation of its name, as in Turkish, the "Demokrat" is similar to "Demir Kirat", or, Iron White Horse. It is not expected to win many, if any, seats, even with the coalition deal, with perhaps 5 being an extremely optimistic number.

SP is a splinter party from the same old and banned party AKP was once part of; SP is avowedly Islamist in nature.

The Government alliance is expected to win somewhere between 45% and 55% of the seats in Parliament, while the main Opposition alliance, between 35% and 45%. HDP would make up the remainder.

Erdogan has worked with the HDP before, and in the event he fails to win a majority in Parliament, we could expect to see this again to some degree.

In summary, Erdogan is expected to win, and its only a matter of by how much.

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