I witnessed closely all of Turkey's electoral campaigns in recent years with a researcher's curiosity. The local elections of 2014 come to the forefront as a case study, as those elections were held immediately after the FETÖ-led operations of December 17 to 25. Targeting four ministers and almost one hundred businessmen, those operations were realized by the spies of FETÖ in the very heart of the state bureaucracy and aimed at creating a negative perception of President Erdoğan and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party). Unfortunately, the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) put to use all that fabricated evidence in its electoral campaign, while the Gulenist Terror Group (FETÖ) began to support, in each electoral district, the closest rival of the AK Party, including the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP). Yet, the AK Party won the elections, while FETÖ and the opposition parties, who were picturing the president as a dictator, lost the elections.
In a similar vein, in the presidential elections of 2014, when for the first time the electorate voted to elect the president directly, the opposition political parties held on to the same goal, i.e. overthrowing President Erdoğan, and repeated the same arguments of FETÖ. As I took part in the president's strategy team, I closely observed that the president's electoral campaign mainly focused on communicating the promises and vision of the president to the electorate. Erdoğan won the elections and has become the first president who was directly elected by the votes of the people. In other words, it was clear that the electoral strategy of the opposition political parties, that aimed to overthrow the president without any alternative policy or vision, went bankrupt.
In the elections of June 2015, when Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was the president and Ahmet Davutoğlu was the prime minister, the sum of the votes of the opposition political parties were for the first time higher than those of the ruling AK Party. Yet, as they could not have formed a government, Turkey went to the polls again. After the elections of November 2015, the AK Party came to power alone. However, the spy and criminal ring FETÖ, who couldn't pulled down President Erdoğan through democratic elections, shockingly attempted a coup d'état.
During the failed coup d'etat of July 15, 2016, the members of FETÖ in the Turkish Army atrociously opened fire on civilians and murdered hundreds of unarmed people. The coup d'etat was defeated by the unrivaled resistance of the people, while certain countries, most notably Germany, appeared to be on the side of the coup plotters. Invoking the people to defend Turkish democracy, President Erdoğan immediately became the hero of the country. According to the surveys of the GENAR held on the failed coup d'etat, 95 percent of the participants affirmed the president's attitude on the night of July 15. In this respect, the statements of the Western states on the failed coup d'etat, which concerned the plotters instead of condemning the plot, were more than disappointing.
Henceforth, Turkey now has a new politics with a new sociology. The conservative alliance between the AK Party and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) concluded with constitutional amendments which decreed the introduction of the presidential system.
During the last presidential elections, opposition political parties repeated their mistakes by bringing forth a hallow electoral strategy that mainly concentrated on overthrowing President Erdoğan, while the president's campaign included a comprehensive vision for Turkey's future in all fields of foreign policy, economy, security, social politics and so forth. The electors overwhelmingly voted for the candidate who has the resolution to administer the country. Fortunately, the influence of FETÖ on the elections this time seemed to be dimmed and feeble.
In short, President Erdoğan has won the elections by promising stability and development, while the opposition political parties have lost the elections due to their inability to create an alternative politics and vision.
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