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Can Selçuki, General Director of Istanbul Economics Research, told opposition daily Cumhuriyet that in the agency’s September survey, to the question of “If there was an election on Sunday, which party would you vote for?”, only 35 percent of the participants chose AK party. Yet, neither is its main rival making any gains. Only 17.4 percent would vote for CHP.
Can Selçuki announced the result of the survey they conducted with 1500 people in the first week of October. Istanbul Economics Research General Manager stated that in a possible election, the Republican Alliance, consisting of AKP and MHP will receive less than 43 percent of the vote, and that there is a significant increase of the votes of IYI party, chaired by Mrs Meral Aksener, also mentioned as a potential opposition candidate for the next presidential race.
Underlining that fact of CHP’s support rate decreased to 18 percent, Selçuki said “CHP’s low voter ratings is caused by an archaic and staid party structure. H added that Chairman of CHP Kemal Kılıçtaroğlu, wants to keep the alliance together with the right strategy and to expand the opposition alliance by developing different connections with other parties as much as possible. However, this policy has a negative effect on his own popularity and to his party’s voting rate. “Kılıçtaroğlu does not seem to worry about this effect at all, preferring to look at the whole picture”, added Selcuki.
Can Selçuki revealed the survey results to Cumhuriyet newspaper, which they conducted with 1500 people in the first week of October.
Selçuki said that the answer to the question of “Which party would you vote for, if there will be an election this upcoming Sunday?”, 35 percent of participants answered as AKP, 17.4 percent CHP, 13.7 percent IYI Party, 9.9 percent HDP and 7.7 percent MHP respectively.
Can Selçuki mentioned that there were differences in voter behavior in the ruling and opposition front after the 2019 local elections and added, “IYI Party has raised its voting rate above 13 percent for the first time since its foundation. CHP on the other hand, fell below 18 percent for the first time. There are two main reasons behind this situation. First, IYI party seems to have achieved the increase in votes primarily from AKP and CHP voters. There is no obstacle to change the opinions of those who are not satisfied with their current party, who now support IYI Party.”
Economic distress trims AKP votes, foreign agenda ignored
Noting that Republic Alliance is also below 43 percent, Selçuki stated “The votes for AKP, which rose to 47-48 percent in the spring months when people locked themselves indoors due to the epidemic, has been in a downward trend since June. The biggest factor in this development is the course of Turkish economy. With the arrival of September, we notice that the factors keeping the economy alive in the previous months have gradually rolled over. If we look at the results, it seems that the month in which the economic effects of the epidemic were most felt, was September so far. The cost of living and unemployment have become no longer overshadowed by other agendas created by the government. The power of developments that cause instant increases in voting rates, such as the stance in foreign policy, opening Hagia Sophia to worship, and the discovery of natural gas, is gradually decreasing.”
Noting that when participants of the survey asked “Which leader can fix the economy best?” Selçuki answered, “We asked this question in May. Comparative results show, the rate of those who support Erdoğan has dropped from 40 percent to 33 percent. There seems to be a clear decrease in President Erdogan’s core support.”
Selçuki said that the leaders who can fix the economy, politician Meral Akşener increased from 4.6 percent to 8.6 percent, and politician Ali Babacan increased from 2.3 to 8.9 percent.
PATurkey has received a poll of polls table from Istanbulanalytics (see table below) which reveals that after distributing undecided and no answer votes to parties, AKP-MHP is short of a parliamentary majority. Undecideds, ranging around 15% will decide the outcome of the next election. Two other survey agencies, namely KONDA and Metropoll find that a very large portion of undecideds are former AKP voters, but it is not clear whether these will return to their former party or head for alternatives.
Since economic misery remains the foremost concern of the poll participants, followed closely by the state of the Covid-19 epidemic, the fortunes of AKP-MHP seem to be tied to a vaccine and economic recovery.
Translation: Cem Cetinguc
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