Nov. 1 election will be remembered as ‘most suspicious’

One of the most fundamental responsibilities of a government in a democratic state is to take the country to election without any concerns or fears.
Holding fair elections is a sine qua non for the results to be respected.
The use of state resources in favor of the ruling party, like the use of and”disproportionateand” power leads to a loss of confidence in the election results.
Before the Nov. 1 election, all of these negative developments occurred. The voters who sought peace by changing the government in the June 7 election were frightened by the chaos and the shortcomings a coalition government could present . President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, interim Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoilu, Parliament Speaker ismet Yilmaz, Cabinet members and the administrators of the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) all relied on a discourse of fear and anxiety in order to in turn stoke fear in society.
The publicand’s concerns were increased by terrorist attacks, like the one in Ankara which killed more than 100 people, and caused trauma in society especially when added to the funerals held across the country almost every day for the soldiers and police officers killed in the attacks.
So, nobody expected the people to vote for the AK Party again and to bring it to power with a level of support that is even beyond its success in the 2011 election.
Not even the minimum requirements for a fair competition were met. The Treasury aid normally given to parties for an election was not given for the Nov. 1 vote. Since the AK Party does not have any financial problems, it did not have difficulty in financing its election campaign, but this was not so for the opposition parties.
The small parties which cannot enter Parliament have been the main victims of unfair competition in the elections. The voters of these parties have been treated as if they were absent.
Despite all this, nobody expected the public to punish the opposition nor should they have expected it because elections are not held to punish the victim.
State means have become tools for the use of disproportionate power. Public resources have been generously transferred to the newspapers and TV channels that spread AK Party propaganda. The bureaucracy, particularly abroad, acted as a mouthpiece for the AK Party. The neighborhood heads (muhtars) who are the peopleand’s representatives have turned into AK Party spokespeople. Muhtars even took an active role in the AK Party campaign in villages, hanging its flags and banners.
The state-run Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT), which is funded by taxes from all voters in addition to the amount taken from taxpayersand’ electricity bills, ignored the opposition parties while speeches by Erdogan and Davutoilu were broadcasted live on TRT channels, in addition to the pro-government channels.
Despite this, nobody has come out and said andquotAround 50 percent of the voters were subjected to AK Party propaganda.andquot
On the contrary, people said:
-The conscience of the nation would just reject such injustice. -The efforts to intimidate the public with andquotbeyaz Torosandquot if revisited would create a boomerang effect concerning terror and violence. The term andquotbeyaz Toros,andquot a white Renault car model, was used to refer to a clandestine group nested within the state known for its brutal acts, such as the kidnapping, torture and killing of Kurds in the southeastern region who refused to cooperate with the government and defied the militaryand’s unlawful practices targeting local residents. White Toros vehicles were often used by the security forces when taking the victims from their homes. – The voters would still insist on a coalition government because their preference for such on June 7 was disregarded.
Even pro-government polling companies announced that although there would be an increase in the AK Partyand’s vote in November, the prospects of its coming to power as a single-party government were not strong. Normally, these pro-government companies would raise what they found in the field for several points if they found 47 percent, they would show it as 51-52 percent.
The Nov. 1 vote will not only be remembered for these suspicions but with also with some questions.
-The questioning will continue over where the additional AK Party votes came from, because it is more than the total vote lost by the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and the Peoplesand’ Democratic Party (HDP). -The answers to the questions surrounding the dramatic increase in votes for the AK Party, which had reached its maximum number of voters in the 2011 election, will continue to be sought. -The AK Partyand’s performance in countries with just a single ballot box and more than one ballot box is also suspicious given the fact that it received the maximum amount of support it could from abroad in the June 7 general election.
The suspicions surrounding the Nov. 1 vote will continue because the AK Party created the perception that it can do anything in order to stay in power and what steps it took to this effect have not been fully understood.

SOURCE: TODAY’S ZAMAN

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