It is becoming increasingly difficult to approach President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in a neutral and objective manner in the current atmosphere of political polarization. This is almost impossible to achieve particularly for Erdoğan's opponents. It should be noted from the very beginning that Erdoğan is a politician who strives to expand his scope as far as he can in all positions. Furthermore, he is quite a pragmatic leader who tries his best in order not to lose his legitimate ground in the eyes of the public. For this reason, he may not avoid exhibiting manners that seem contradictory and can manage to maintain authoritarianism and democracy simultaneously.
It is a problem for Erdoğan's opponents that his prestige has strengthened further in the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) and in the eyes of the public, if one fails to approach him fairly. After all, the AK Party does not only rest on the Islamic conservative segment, which is the largest community in the country, it also represents a multiple-identity and plural electorate through the expanding middle-class. This is by far enough to make the AK Party the largest party and to not allow the formation of a government that excludes the party.
While there is such a challenge facing you, your main objective should be to receive votes from the AK Party's electorate, rather than inciting your base to militancy. This forces you to stay away from the discourse of conflict. Undoubtedly, the AK Party will lose votes if it attempts to maintain tension in such a case. Therefore, what makes the much complained about Erdoğan discourse possible is the opposition's attitude and rhetoric. For instance, some might be disturbed when Erdoğan exercises authorities that the Constitution grants to him, although presidents have always used these authorities since the 1980 coup. It was interpreted as a sign of "tutelage" when Erdoğan said he preferred snap elections during coalition talks. Apart from the fact that all AK Party supporters wanted snap elections, a coalition could have already been formed if the Republican People's Party (CHP) had acted "reasonably." It is presented almost as a sign of dictatorship that Erdoğan did not entitle CHP Chairman Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu to form a government. However, there were not any government alternatives because of the Nationalist Movement Party's (MHP) insistently rejectionist attitude. If Kılıçdaroğlu could receive the MHP's support, it would be impossible for Erdoğan to not authorize the CHP to form a government. Furthermore, it is inexplicable that those who consider the talks between the AK Party and CHP as a "lingering" period and a waste of time approve of an additional week of talks with Kılıçdaroğlu. Some argued that it was a (democratic) practice to assign the task of forming a government to the party that came in second in the elections. However, this is a practice that was hardly abided by in the past and it was not used nonsensically and blatantly. Apart from all this, it was complete nonsense to criticize Erdoğan for deciding to hold snap elections. If this decision had not been made, the lingering period would have prolonged further. On the other hand, if parties did not want Erdoğan to be included in this process, they should have made this decision in Parliament. Despite Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu's calls, other parties did not lean toward this idea.
Indeed, we are facing a simple situation. The single condition for the AK Party's electoral defeat is its own mistakes, as overtly demonstrated by the June 7 elections. Apart from this, other parties do not have a chance of defeating the AK Party. Turkey's sociology makes a coalition without the AK Party impossible and prevents opposition parties from making an initiative that can appeal to the entirety of society. In short, there remains no possibility for the opposition to do politics and politics is experienced only between the AK Party and society. The opposition has to produce an artificial political realm. This is found in Erdoğan himself and, frankly speaking, Erdoğan is not dissatisfied with this situation. The consequence is that many futile debates are taken seriously and occupy the agenda. Society will see the AK Party once again in front of them in the election environment and will act accordingly.