May 19 2018

Turkish presidential race too tight to call – pollster

SONAR polling company has released its latest figures, showing that the Turkish presidential race is unlikely to be decided on the first round, opposition newspaper Cumhuriyet said.

Of 3,000 people surveyed in 26 provinces around Turkey, 42 percent said they would vote for current president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, 22 percent for his secular Republican People’s Party (CHP) rival Muharrem İnce, and 21 percent for nationalist Good Party head Meral Akşener.

Jailed Kurdish politician Selahattin Demirtaş polled 11 percent, while Temel Karamollaoğlu, who heads the Islamist-origin Felicity Party, polled 2.1 percent and Doğu Perinçek of the left-nationalist Patriotic Party polled 2 percent.

At the last presidential elections in July 2014, SONAR had predicted an Erdoğan win in the first round with 53.3 percent of the vote. In the event, Erdoğan succeeded in a first round win with 52 percent of the vote.

In terms of the parliamentary elections, Cumhuriyet said that calculations of seats was much more difficult this time around, as they are being determined by a two-step process: first each alliance’s number of seats will be calculated in each province, and then each individual party’s number of seats within the alliance.