Turkey’s Erdogan Woos Voters in Re-Election Campaign

Many analysts predict Mr. Erdogan will win on Sunday given his strong showing in the first round and his subsequent endorsement by the third-place candidate, Sinan Ogan, who received 5.2 percent of the vote and was eliminated from the race.

In grand terms, the president casts Turkey as being in a great struggle to rise in spite of forces conspiring to keep it down, and he invites voters to join him in this heroic national cause.

He vows to fight “imperialists,” a code word for the West that recalls the fight for independence from European powers that led to Turkey’s founding 100 years ago. He warns of “traps” and “plots” against the nation, like the attempted coup against him in 2016. He speaks out against “economic hit men” and “loan sharks in London,” hinting at foreign hands behind Turkey’s economic struggles. And he blasts terrorist organizations, pointing to decades of bloody battles between the government and militants from Turkey’s Kurdish minority.

To tout his government’s accomplishments, he lauds the infrastructure, calling out airports, tunnels and bridges by name and reminding voters how new highways have cut drive times between cities. Other oft-cited points of pride are the drones, warships and satellites produced by Turkey’s growing defense industry.

Mr. Erdogan spends little time on the country’s economic woes, including annual inflation that peaked above 80 percent last year and remained stubbornly high at 44 percent last month, greatly reducing the purchasing power of ordinary citizens. Nor has he hinted that in victory he would revise policies that some economists say have left the economy vulnerable to a possible currency crisis or recession.

What Next?

Recent Articles

Leave a Reply

You must be Logged in to post comment.