Here's How Erdogan Plans To Steal Sunday's Election

As Turks prepare to head to the polls Sunday in a snap election called by incumbent President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Foreign Policy has published what is essentially a summary blueprint outlining the ways Erdogan could steal the election, noting "Sunday's vote is one he can't afford to lose."

As we previously commented, though the man who has dominated the nation's politics for almost two decades is not expected to lose, a consensus is emerging that the vote should be regarded as a referendum on his person and leadership.

And now, a visible surge in popularity for the rival secularist Republican People's Party (CHP) candidate has pundits declaring the opposition actually has a chance. 

AKP President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Republican People's Party (CHP) challenger Muharrem Ince.  Image via Hurriyet

Erdogan has often boasted that he has never lost an election and, as recent polls indicate, he is unlikely to lose this time either (but likely by a thin margin). Since 2002, he and his AKP (Justice and Development Party) have won five parliamentary elections, three local elections, three referendums and one presidential election. 

The president moved elections that weren't supposed to be held until 2019 forward by more than a year in hopes of smashing an unprepared opposition, but there's yet a possibility this could backfire.  

Ironically, the move could blow up in Erdogan's face as he called for the early elections at a moment when the economy appeared strong, but which in the interim began tanking — giving all but die-hard AKP supporters reason for serious pause as the opposition's message becomes louder. 

His legacy has already been established as ushering in Turkey’s transformation from a parliamentary to a presidential system, giving a disproportionate share of power to the president, and should he win he'll assume even greater executive powers after last year's referendum which narrowly approved major constitutional changes related to the presidency. 

But Erdogan's main opposition candidate, Muharrem Ince, is this week drawing immense crowds according to a variety of reports, and gaining support from a cross-section of Turks increasingly fed up with Erdogan's power-grabbing.

Ince, a former high school physics teacher widely seen has having much more charisma, has mirrored Erdogan's firebrand and combative rhetoric while taking direct aim at the Islamic conservative Justice and Development Party (AKP) leader's enabling corruption and nepotism, and his further overseeing an economy in tailspin with the lira having lost nearly 20% of its value since the year began, inflation at 12%, and interest rates at 18%.

Muharrem Ince's simple yet pointed appeal goes something like this: "Erdogan is tired, he has no joy and he is arrogant," he told hundreds of thousands of supporters at an Izmir rally on Wednesday. CNN noted the rally presented "what looked like the largest crowd in the elections period yet."


Muharrem Ince's Wednesday rally in Izmir as shown on Turkish television. Crowd size estimates ranged from 250,000 up to millions, depending on who was commenting.

Sunday's election is being widely described the most important in recent Turkish political history — a crossing the Rubicon moment for Erdogan as he stands to inherit an unprecedented and likely irreversible level of sweeping executive authority. 

As Foreign Policy explains, he has carefully put the architecture in place for this moment, and the outlook remains bleak for the future of democracy in Turkey:

The current Council of Ministers, all members of parliament, will cease to exist and the president will appoint advisors and deputies to run the country. Parliament, especially if it remains in the hands of Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP), will be nothing but a rubber stamp. Erdogan over the years has amassed an enormous amount of power by molding state institutions to his liking and by eliminating anyone from his entourage who can even minimally challenge him. Every single member of the party owes his or her position directly to Erdogan. This patronage system permeates all levels of the bureaucracy, which has lost its independence.

So again, on June 24 losing is not an option for Erdogan.

* * *

Here are ways Erdogan can steal the election, according to Foreign Policy:

1) He's already engineered electoral law for less oversight of ballots:

He has engineered several changes to the electoral law, two of which could be game-changers. The first is the elimination of the requirement that all ballots be stamped by officials. This practice will open up the system to abuse in obvious ways — it was precisely such a last-minute change that allowed the government to claim victory in 2017 during the constitutional referendum.

2) Erdogan's own party cronies will manage and appoint officials for Sunday's election process:

Erdogan’s second change to the electoral law concerns the ballot box overseers: Whereas in the past political parties nominated candidates who were chosen by a draw, under the new rules overseers are to be chosen among local officials whose jobs are ultimately determined by the government and the state. 

3) Switching ballot locations especially in Kurdish areas:

Suppressing the Kurdish vote is critical for the government... one can expect more shenanigans in Kurdish-majority areas, because Erdogan needs to push the Peoples’ Democratic Party below the 10 percent threshold to ensure that his party wins a majority of seats in parliament. 

4) Erdogan now essentially owns the judicial system, the military, and media - all of which will be leveraged:

The Supreme Electoral Council, the judicial system, and the military — until recently Erdogan’s most dedicated nemesis — are all now under Erdogan’s control. The military was completely denuded of its higher ranks following the July 2016 failed coup attempt...

...The national press, meanwhile, is completely dominated by Erdogan’s acolytes. The results are unsurprising: In the last two weeks of May, a study demonstrated that the president and his party received far more coverage on three government-owned television stations, including a Kurdish-language one. 

5) No detail has been left untouched, but last minute "shenanigans" will ensure victory if it's close:

Erdogan, the consummate politician, is not leaving anything about this election to chance; no detail has been too small to escape his attention.

...Still, it is quite doubtful that he will allow anything but a total victory for himself — one should expect a great deal of shenanigans on the part of the ruling party in the final run-up to the June 24 vote.

 

Comments

p4424119 Bill of Rights Fri, 06/22/2018 - 22:25 Permalink

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In reply to by Bill of Rights

OliverAnd directaction Sat, 06/23/2018 - 01:49 Permalink

You must be using Iranian opium dealt by Erdogan while inhaling stolen Kurdish and Syrian oil from your poorly assembled Turkish built Renault. You are one of those that believe Erdogan made his billions selling lemonade from a stand along the Black Sea... and that the Grey Wolves who are responsible for thousands of Turkish lives alone are a great partner for AKP during the elections in less than 48 hours. Do us all a favor and hold your breath for an hour. Thank you.

In reply to by directaction

el buitre OliverAnd Sun, 06/24/2018 - 08:20 Permalink

We all know that Erdogan is a scumbag, but if Foreign Policy is against him (the public mouthpiece of the CFR, run by the late uber satanist David Rockefeller, perhaps still from the depths of Hell), perhaps Erdogan has something to recommend him.  Hmmm, the Russians tipped him off a couple of years ago to the CIA coup and assassination plot.  As the CIA was out to kill him, it sort of soured him to the USA and NATO.

In reply to by OliverAnd

OliverAnd wadalt Sat, 06/23/2018 - 00:54 Permalink

How fair and balanced are you? The Muslims under Ottoman rule did worse to the Jews; hence the Jewish diaspora. Because there were no photographs then does not mean it did not happen. Historically these lands belonged to the Jewish people. When the Ottoman's took over they infiltrated the local population with Turks and traitor Muslim Palestinians; Palestinians were Christians and either forced to convert to Islam or die. Many chose to kneel to Islam, some chose to die or to be prosecuted. It is the common practice of Ottomans/Turks to invade and change demographics. They did it in Albania, Bosnia, Kosovo, Armenia, Grorgia, Greece and most recently in Cyprus. You should see the pictures of decapitated Armenians, Greeks and Cypriots while they stand proud of their deeds. What Palestinians need to understand FULLY is their past and move forward by living in peace with the Israelis. PERIOD. If you have been in the area you would know that no one gives a rats ass about the Palestinians from any of the surrounding Arab nations. The only that care are those that use them for propaganda and to push their own agendas. Turks as people from central Asia have their hands soaked very deep in European and Arab blood and their rule as Ottomans have led to all the turmoil we see today in the Middle East and the Balkans during the Clinton administration. 

Its war for sake! What did you want to see flowers being thrown from F16 and F35s? It is what happens in war unfortunately.

In reply to by wadalt

trutherator IvannaHumpalot Sat, 06/23/2018 - 17:55 Permalink

I remember the Portugl flower power coup. Good coup. 

In 1968, Dubcek led the "Prague Spring" in Czechoslovakia. Shortly after,  Soviet tanks rolled in. Brother Andrew, Bible smuggler to closed counries, rushed there and rebuked the churches for letting a witness opportunity pass them up.

The result was the churches started flooding the Russian soldiers with flowers, food & drink, tea, gospel literature. The Russian soldiers became so unreliable the Kremlin rotated the whole bunch out. Then enforced harsh penalties for any who even spoke to the natives.

In reply to by IvannaHumpalot

Bollockinell p4424119 Sat, 06/23/2018 - 12:49 Permalink

All you have to do is lie through your teeth in your hunt for other suckers looking to lose money.
It sounds unbelievable because it so obviously is!

- is it a Land Rover or a Range Rover? If it's a Land Rover, it can't be new because they aren't in production anymore.
- Even if you made a mistake and meant to say Range Rover, neither of those vehicles can be bought new for $11752.

Now, do us all the courtesy of finding a whopping great spiky-tipped dildo, insert it into your butt hole and then hammer it all the way in until it begins knocking your teeth out.

In reply to by p4424119

holdbuysell Fri, 06/22/2018 - 22:24 Permalink

The fact that Foreign Policy outlines how to illegally steal the election speaks volumes on the condition of "democracy" in Turkey, a microcosm to global elections in general.

currency Fri, 06/22/2018 - 22:44 Permalink

Erdogan is a sick, CORRUPT THUG who is trying to re create the failed Ottoman Empire. He thinks is is the next Sultan.

His followers are CORRUPT and CRAZY.

Turkey is going to have a melt down, the good people of Turkey are going to say enough and throw Erdogan out in a Velvet revolution and also Erdogan buddies are going to be thrown out.

 

CriticalUser HRH of Aquitaine 2.0 Sat, 06/23/2018 - 09:00 Permalink

Know your history: Hitler was a genocidal warmongering meth-junk, far nastier in actions than Erdogan... yet.
Even though Hitler is an inspiration for Erdogan (besides the Ottoman time), Erdogan is until now relatively nice compared to Hitler. Except in words, Erdogan is a foul-mouthed heathead and insults so many people, far worse in taht regard than Hitler.

In reply to by HRH of Aquitaine 2.0

WTFUD Fri, 06/22/2018 - 22:57 Permalink

I took a poll from my local Turkish restaurants in Londinium and Erdogan receives 37% of the vote, down from 56% since America's unsuccessful coup d'etat.

Erdogan is an American puppet they state.

I'm so confused with America denying him fighter jets, Erdogan threatening to purchase Russian s-400's and the Turkstream Pipeline steaming along at 3km per day. 

OliverAnd sidfalco Sat, 06/23/2018 - 01:09 Permalink

Turks are not Anatolians. They are from central Asia. Do some research. Anatolians are the Greeks and they were slaughtered in 1922. The ones that want to be called Anatolians are fake. They simply want the world to forget history otherwise they can not ever lay claim to lands they have illegally occupied from the Greeks.

In reply to by sidfalco

sidfalco OliverAnd Sat, 06/23/2018 - 08:22 Permalink

Shut the fuck up. Do you think that if I know what Rumelians are I don't know what Anatolians are? You've probably never even been there, just some american cocksucker with a greek grandparent.

"anatolian scum" accurately reflects the geographic area (and electorate) where Erdogan gets most of his votes. Go and bore someone else you loser.

In reply to by OliverAnd

OliverAnd sidfalco Sat, 06/23/2018 - 09:22 Permalink

Hey moron I have been to Turkey many times. Erdogon gets his votes from central Turkey or the eastern half of Anatolia where the poorest and most illiterate Islamic Turks live. Rumelia or European Turkey is not where Erdogan gets his votes. Western Anatolia or Turkey along the Aegean is not where Erdogan gets his votes. In addition Erdogan does not get bis votes from southeastern Turkey (1/3 landmass of Turkey) of Turkish occupied Kurdistan. You don't believe me then all you need to do is check the electorial results from the previous election that he marginally won. You moron Turk!!!

In reply to by sidfalco

Yen Cross Fri, 06/22/2018 - 23:48 Permalink

How many times have I suggested that Erdogon and his pathetic, bald headed Son are the scum of the Earth?

 Spider is crawling up the left side of my face.

matermaker Yen Cross Sat, 06/23/2018 - 00:37 Permalink

Lawrence only spanked the Ottomans, 100 years ago.  The Bedouin were no match for them then... not much so more now.  The Turks have been the buffer, save this little generation, for over a 1000 years.  They almost conquered Vienna on September the 11th.  Erdogan only needs to keep it together for a little while longer.

In reply to by Yen Cross

matermaker Sat, 06/23/2018 - 00:25 Permalink

Noooooooooo.... There will be conflict that breaks out in Idlib and the Golan or some shit.   He will tell the West to go fuck themselves when they ask to use Incirlik.  Whatever plays out, it isn't going past Turkey.  You guys are always spouting off about jews.  The original Khazar converts were around the Black Sea.