Erdogan appears headed for a runoff in race keep his job as president of Turkey


Category:  News & Politics

Via:  perrie-halpern  •  last year  •  3 comments

By:   Neyran Elden and Henry Austin

Erdogan appears headed for a runoff in race keep his job as president of Turkey
Turkey's strongman President Recep Tayyip Erdogan faced the strongest challenge to his 20-year hold on power as preliminary results showed he narrowly failed to secure a majority win for a third term in Sunday's election.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T

More than 64 million people, including 3.4 million overseas voters, were eligible to vote in the elections and voter turnout, in a country where it is traditionally strong, was high.

Harun Armagan, a member of the AK Party Central Decision Making Board, said Sunday night that the results bode well for Erdogan.

"We can clearly see that it is a solid win for President Erdogan and AK Party," he said. "It is a night of victory for the millions of AK Party supporters in Turkey."

Ahead of the election, the mood was buoyant in Istanbul.

"I just voted, and am waiting for the results," Banu Yilmaz, 60, a retired banker, told NBC News. "We hope this time something might change in our country. Because now I think people are more conscious," added retired pharmacist Zafer Ozi, 81.

The elections came as Turkey is still reeling from the fallout from two massive earthquakes in February that caused devastation in 11 southern provinces and left tens of thousands dead.

Erdogan's government has been criticized for its response to the disaster as well as the lax implementation of building codes that exacerbated the misery.

A languishing economy, which critics have accused the government of mishandling, and a steep cost-of-living crisis also dominated the agenda, along with a backlash against millions of Syrian refugees, in the lead up to the vote.

Erdogan increased wages and pensions, and subsidized electricity and gas bills in a bid to woo voters, while leading a divisive campaign that saw him accuse the opposition of being "drunkards" who colluded with "terrorists." He also attacked opponents for upholding LGBTQ rights, which he said were a threat to traditional family values.

Kilicdaroglu, 74, who has led the secular, center-left Republican People's Party, or CHP, since 2010, vowed to reverse Erdogan's policies and restore democracy.

A starkly different figure to Erdogan, who is known for his bombastic speeches, he is soft-spoken and has built a reputation as a bridge builder. During the campaign he recorded videos in his kitchen in a bid to talk to voters.

His six-party Nation Alliance has promised to dismantle the executive presidential system narrowly voted in by a 2017 referendum. Erdogan has since centralized power in a 1,000-room palace on the edge of Ankara, and it is from there that Turkey's policies on economic, security, domestic and international affairs have been formulated.

Along with returning the country to a parliamentary democracy, Kilicdaroglu and the alliance have promised to establish the independence of the judiciary and the central bank, institute checks and balances and reverse the democratic backsliding and crackdowns on free speech and dissent under Erdogan.

The alliance includes the nationalist Good Party led by former Interior Minister Meral Aksener, and two parties that splintered from Erdogan's AK Party and are led by former prime minister Ahmet Davutoglu and former finance minister Ali Babacan.

Also running for president was Sinan Ogan, a former academic who has the backing of an anti-immigrant nationalist party. Another candidate, the center-left politician Muharrem Ince left the race on Thursday after a significant drop in his ratings but his withdrawal was considered invalid by the country's electoral board and votes for him will be counted.


jrDiscussion - desc
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1  Vic Eldred    last year

In Turkey, I'm sure the freedom loving citizens keep asking "where does he get the votes?"

Professor Quiet
1.1  Ozzwald  replied to  Vic Eldred @1    last year
In Turkey, I'm sure the freedom loving citizens keep asking "where does he get the votes?"

Maybe he called Brad Raffensperger for them.

Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1.1.1  Vic Eldred  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1    last year

More likely Marc Elias and Mark Zuckerberg


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