The electoral frontier

Dünya Executive - - COVER PAGE - CANAN SAKARYA / ANKARA

The Alliance Law is set to change the face of electoral

politics in Turkey

The proposed 26 article bill that outlines the legal infrastruc­ture of the ‘Presidenta­l alliance’ between the AK Party and MHP has entered its final stages. It was expected the passage of the law, which was debated in parliament last week, would strengthen MHP leader Devlet Bahceli’s hand at the 12th Ordinary Congress of the MHP held last weekend. It also continues to cause a flurry of alliance-related activities between parties.

The Grand Unity Party (BBP) remains committed to the presidenti­al alliance and is expected to be elected from the AK Party lists. Meanwhile, rumors of the Saadet Party (SP) joining the Presidenti­al Alliance still swirl in Ankara after a series of meetings between party Chairman Temel Karamollao­glu and AK Party officials, one including President Erdogan, despite the President’s suggestion that an alliance was not in the cards. “If the parties we desire to be together under this roof prefer another road and companion, we can’t do anything else but say goodbye to them,” Erdogan said. AK Party officials, however, added some credence to the rumors, saying the doors have not closed, and that until the very last moment they will have contacts with the SP.

Secur ng the elect on

The hottest topic in Ankara these days is whether the CHP and the GOOD Party will form an alliance. The GOOD Party announced Meral Aksener would be its candidate for president. GOOD Party sources say that an alliance with the CHP will harm the GOOD Party and that the GOOD Party’s alliance should be a ‘national conservati­ve’ alliance. Instead, the emerging strategy seems to be for the two parties to field their own candidates in the first round of the presidenti­al election and then mutually put their weight behind a single candidate against Erdogan in the second round.

Opposition parties are also meeting to discuss issues related to election security posed by the new alliance bill. Officials emphasized, however, that these negotiatio­ns are aimed at ensuring the elections are free and fair and not centered on alliance negotiatio­ns. But insiders say no one should be surprised if an alliance emerges from these meetings in the coming days. Regardless, most agree the likely scenario would be that the CHP will run its own candidate in the first round of the presidenti­al election.

No early elect on

AK party officials repeatedly denied the possibilit­y of early elections last week, announcing elections would be held on schedule. The MHP agreed. “There won’t be any early election in this country unless President Erdogan and Devlet Bahceli mutually say so,” MHP Deputy Chairman, Semih Yalcin, said.

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