Jun 13 2018

Turkish election hangs in the balance – Bloomberg poll

Turkey’s presidential and parliamentary elections are hanging in the balance with less than two weeks left to polling day, a survey commissioned by Bloomberg showed.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan may get the backing of 50.8 percent of voters on June 24, meaning a win for the incumbent in the first round of presidential elections, according to the poll of 500 people conducted by Foresight Danismanlik between June 7 and June 11.

Should the presidential election go to a run-off between Erdoğan and the second-placed candidate on July 8, Erdoğan’s lead would be greater, Foresight said.

An alliance of the governing Justice and Development Party (AKP) and a small nationalist group could also win a majority in parliament, but a victory for the opposition is also possible, the poll showed, according to Bloomberg.

“The key takeaway is that any array of options is possible and the only certainty is that it will be very close,” said Benjamin Harvey, Bloomberg’s bureau chief in Turkey. “Erdoğan and his AK party can’t win alone, and in previous elections they got the support of religious conservatives, free-market liberals or Kurds to govern. Now success hinges on how voters identifying as nationalist cast their ballot.”

Foresight conducted the survey in a district based on demographic and socio-economic factors and that voted in line with the past three election results. The margin of error of 3.5 percentage points was larger than typical because of the smaller sample size.

“Erdoğan always needed and will need coalitions," said Mert Yildiz, who co-founded Foresight a year ago after working as a senior emerging-markets economist at Roubini Global Economics in London. “Even if Erdoğan wins both the parliament and the presidency, political uncertainty is unlikely to end."

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