Shafaq News/ The Turkish presidential and parliamentary elections have yielded surprising results that defied many expectations, analyses, and opinion polls. Notably, the voting outcomes in earthquake-affected areas and the shifting parliamentary landscape based on party vote shares have introduced unexpected elements.
With over 99% of the votes counted, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan secured 49.40% of the vote in the presidential election. His main rival, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, representing the "Table for Six" Party table," garnered 45% of the vote. At the same time, Sinan Ogan, the third candidate, obtained 5.3% of the vote, according to official Turkish media.
A notable development is that the presidential election did not yield a clear victory in the first round, necessitating further voting rounds. If a second round becomes necessary, it will mark the first instance of a presidential election requiring a runoff in Turkish history.
As the possibility of a second round of the presidential elections looms, scheduled for May 28, 2023, Erdogan and Kilicdaroglu will compete head-to-head for the presidency.
Contrary to expectations, pre-election analyses and opinion polls suggested that the united opposition parties challenging Erdogan would gain an advantage in the parliamentary results. This anticipated outcome was based on votes from parties led by individuals who had previously worked alongside the Turkish president, such as Ahmed Davutoglu and Ali Babacan.
For instance, the Guardian published an opinion poll before the Turkish elections, indicating that the "People's Alliance (PEOPLE)" of Erdogan and his allies might lose their parliamentary majority to the "Nation Alliance," which is made up of six opposition parties, including of Kilicdaroglu.
The British newspaper pointed to increased criticism of the current Turkish government regarding the earthquake as a contributing factor.
However, the "Nation Alliance" achieved a significant lead in the parliamentary results, securing 49.37% of the votes compared to the "People's Alliance," which won 35.31% with 99.26% of the votes counted.
Another surprise came from including the "New Welfare" party, a part of the "Nation," which entered parliament for the first time since its establishment, taking five seats. The Party is led by Fatih Erbakan, son of the late Turkish leader Necmettin Erbakan.
Preliminary results also indicate that several parties aligned with the ruling "People's Alliance" managed to secure parliamentary representation. Notably, the "Future" party led by Ahmed Davutoglu obtained ten seats, while the "Felicity" party secured ten seats, and the "Democracy and Progress" party received 13 seats.
Moreover, the election outcomes unveiled surprising patterns in earthquake-affected areas. Western media reports and polls had speculated that discontent over the government's response to the disaster might hinder Erdogan's electoral prospects in these regions. However, the election results revealed that Erdogan maintained popularity in most areas. Additionally, the government's swift implementation of large-scale reconstruction projects in the affected regions before the elections may have contributed to this outcome.
According to the results reported by the Anadolu Agency, Erdogan secured considerable vote shares in earthquake-affected areas, including 71.88% in Kahramanmaras, 66.2% in Adiyaman, 59.7% in Gaziantep, 62.01% in Sanliurfa, and 62.3% in Osmaniye. On the other hand, in Hatay, the margin was slight in favor of Davutoglu with 48.07%, while in Adana, Davutoglu obtained 50.8% compared to Erdogan's 43.9%.