Turkey’s runoff election: Is this the end of the Erdogan era?
For the presidential runoff Millions of Turks will go back to the polls on Sunday to decide the more authoritarian between President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the coalition’s leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu. After two terrible earthquakes earlier this year, Turkey is now experiencing a severe economic crisis, and the future of the nation’s population is at risk greatly. If Erdogan wins, he will rule until 2028 spending over 15 years in Turkey’s seat of power.
First round election results
As reported by topnewsplanet, the results on May 14 came as a surprise after Erdogan exceeded expectations in the election, gaining 49.5% of the vote. Skyrocketing inflation, suspected terrorist attacks and February’s earthquakes had called his competence into question, and many commentators predicted his imminent political demise. But in the weeks before to the election, Erdogan and the nationalist coalition he heads were able to galvanize conservative voters throughout the nation and make tremendous progress. Despite outperforming expectations, however, he failed to reach the 50% threshold required to secure a first-round victory, prompting an election runoff.
Erdogan’s opponent, Kilicdaroglu, who leads the center-left Republican People’s Party, received 44.9% of May 14’s vote. “Do not fall into despair,” Kilicdaroglu told his supporters on Twitter, via translation. “We will stand up and take this election together.”
A catastrophic quake could have ended Erdogan’s rule. He’s now poised to win the election.
Kilicdaroglu is part of a six-party coalition known as the Nation Alliance, which has come together to battle Erdogan’s 20-year authoritarian rule. The alliance has vowed to restore parliamentary democracy in Turkey — reversing the presidential system Erdogan introduced in 2018, which abolished the office of prime minister after 98 years.
With 5.2% of the vote Sinan Ogan, the chairman of the far right Nationalist Movement Party placed third in the presidential election. Though he was immediately eliminated from the vote, he was dubbed the “kingmaker,” given the share of the votes he received. On Monday, Ogan threw his support behind Erdogan and the People’s Alliance. “We believe that our decision will be the right decision for our country and nation,” Ogan said.
this is the first time in Turkey’s history that the presidential election has come down to a runoff. The first round result indicated a clear drop in public support for Erdogan compared with previous elections. Speaking outside his party’s headquarters in Ankara Erdogan said that although the results were not yet finalized, this did not change the fact that we are the preference of our nation. For More Details…
Why this election is so important
Whoever is elected as Turkey’s next president will oversee serious domestic and international issues that will ultimately affect the country’s population. Turkey is a member of NATO and the next president will also have a voice in the future of the military alliance both as to who may join and how the organization responds to any possible assaults on member nations. Domestically, Turkey is still suffering from the devastating earthquakes and aftershocks that hit its southern region in February. Towns and cities were left in mountains of rubble, and it is estimated that close to 2 million people have migrated from the disaster zones.
Interviews with young people in Turkey conducted by AFP found that most felt they had no future at home. “Young people have no more hope,” engineering student Hasibe Kayaroglu said after the first vote. “Every night, the only thing we talk about with my roommate is how to leave.”
When do the polls open?
Erdogan and Kilicdaroglu have spent the previous two weeks campaigning for Sunday’s second vote. Polls will open throughout the nation at 8 a.m. in Turkey (1 a.m. ET) on Sunday and will shut at 5 p.m. (10 a.m. ET). On Monday, the complete results are most likely to be made public.