AK Party at the fork junction of stability and transformation - SÜLEYMAN SEYFI ÖĞÜN

AK Party at the fork junction of stability and transformation

There is little time before the June 7th elections. In a sense, there is nothing surprising in these elections in terms of the alignment of the political parties. It's clear that CHP, MHP and HDP's place in this alignment will not change. After all, no survey on this matter says that this alignment will change.

On the other hand, nowadays, normally it would be expected for the public to make up their preferences and for the indecisive people to gain decisiveness. However, I can't say that my observations are in this direction. The fluctuation of the indecisive is continuing.

First of all, the winner of the election will not be the most voted party. Over the singularities of the election system, we can say that the winner of the elections will be designated completely with ratings and the parliamentarian distribution, whose suitability with the ratings is disputable. On the other hand, the feature of the upcoming elections is hidden in the relative gains whose psychological influence exceeds numbers. For example, if HDP exceeds the 10% threshold, no matter their position, it will be enough to make them the winners of the 2015 elections.

Everyone knows that if AK Party's, who will surely come out of the elections as the first party, voting rates are above a certain threshold, AK Party will be the winner of the elections. I evaluate this threshold as 43%. If AK Party goes below this threshold, they would be weakening their chance to keep their condition stable. If they preserve this rating and even increase it by couple of points, then they will be regaining the opportunity to stabilize their condition. As for 46 % and above, in Bekir Ağırdır's words, it will be providing them with a “comfy majority”. It seems that AK Party needs to provide at least a 46% majority in order to take a step towards a political-structural transformation that includes the transition to the Presidential Regime.

Within this frame, AK Party's strategy seems worthy of discussing. AK Party's objectives appear as dual qualified. The promise is to continue rulership successes and advance them even further. Mr. Davutoğlu's speeches are emphasizing this the most. “They will talk, while AK Party does” slogan is also explaining AK Party's “stability” based intensifier policies. However, in economic-politic terms of the New Turkey, this expression may be sufficient. However, I can't say that this expression will be sufficient for the political-judicial transformation of New Turkey. At this point, a second strategy, different than the “stability”-based first strategy, that can be regarded as “transformist” directed towards creating political excitement and is carried by Mr. Erdoğan, comes into play. Mr. Erdoğan goes to the squares by presenting his personal charisma. It's widespread to interpret this intervention as Erdoğan's attempt to consolidate his base. However, I regard this evaluation to be acceptable at a limited level. This will have a relative influence on the consolidation level. However, in my opinion, this intervention should be regarded as the necessity of a transformist strategy. As a matter of fact, to be more precise; Mr. Erdoğan's intervention can be interpreted as a political attack directed at reaching a rating above 43% and 46%, that explains the stability strategy. If it's interpreted this way, then it means that there is another problem. To what extent will Erdoğan's charisma have an influence on indecisive people's votes? We don't know yet. Besides, I don't know how much this had been approached in the surveys. Under these circumstances, we can only make speculations about it.

Speculatively we can say that; as a first possibility, Mr. Erdoğan's intervention will be successful in winning back the votes shifting to MHP or HDP. This will also limit MHP's expected success and push HDP below the threshold. If this happens, the strategy can be regarded as successful. This success would be providing a couple of points to the stability-sided public, which hypothetically provides supports at the threshold of 43%. As for the second possibility; this intervention will be increasing the “anti-Erdoğan” feeling, which is against Erdoğan's charisma, even further and maybe even pluck some of the votes going to AK Party over stability politics. It seems that Mr. Erdoğan has taken this risk. We will see the results on June 8th.


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