AK Party dominates polls, wins back parliament majority

Three successive parliamentary winner AK Party wins polls back after losing majority on June 7 elections, securing parliamentary majority

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

A young man waves flags outside the AK Party headquarters in Ankara, Turkey on November 1 2015

Updated Nov 2, 2015

Justice and Development Party  (AK Party), the only political movement that successively had increased its votes in three parliament elections until it lost a majority for the first time on the June 7 election, has once again dominated the polls and secured enough seats in parliament and became the majority.

The first reaction to the election results came from Prime Minister and chairman of AK Party Ahmet Davutoglu.

“No one is defeated today, there are winners today,” said Davutoglu to the crowd in Konya, where he casted his vote.

“And that is our nation, our republic and our democracy,” he said.

“The victory belongs to our people.”

AK Party, established by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in August 2001, won 49.5  percent of the votes nationwide and secured 316 seats, surpassing the previous results of 40.89 on the June 7 election with 258 seats.

Sunday’s election outcome is also a record number for the AK Party dominated polls, as it broke its own record, being a majority movement in parliament on its fourth round.

The June 7 election was a shock for AK Party, since it was the first time the party lost a majority in parliament. The decrease of AK Party votes in Turkey’s three largest cities - Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir - has played an important role in the fall, despite it was still the most powerful party in parliament.

In the June election, the party secured 41.11 percent of the votes in Istanbul, 41.40 percent in Ankara, and 26.75 percent in Izmir.

Even the rise in percentages of the largest three cities are lower than some of the other cities, they lead the country due to the population being so high.

Sanliurfa with 64.41 percent from 46.78 and Erzurum with 67.88 from 51.97 followed with the highest rise in percentages in AK Party’s votes.

However, Sunday’s election showed a remarkable change in the leading cities of the country. AK Party increased its votes to 48.77 percent in Istanbul, 49.07 in Ankara, and 31.18 in Izmir which is a stronghold for the Republican People's Party (CHP).

AK Party has also dominated polls in other stronghold cities for the CHP; Eskisehir, Mersin, Zonguldak, and Canakkale.

The decrease of votes in Turkey’s eastern and southeastern cities had also played an important role for AK Party losing the majority at parliament during the June 7 election. The party had secured no MP in Agri out of four, one in Siirt out of three, one in Bitlis out of three, one in Mus out of four, one in Van out of nine and one in Diyarbakir out of 12.

Their votes also decreased in four southeastern cities with seven MP in Sanliurfa out of 19, six in Gaziantep out of 18, one in Batman out of five and no MP out of two in Igdir.

The Prime Minister and the chairman of AK Party Ahmet Davutoglu replaced almost all candidates from June 7 in the region since all these cities had been dominated by AK Party until then, hoping it will make difference.

Obviously, Davutoglu’s move in the region made a remarkable difference in Sunday’s election and AK Party secured one MP in Agri, two in Van, two in Diyarbakir.
It also increased its votes and of course number of MP: nine in Sanliurfa, eight in Gaziantep, and one in Igdir.

In Turkey’s 26th parliamentary election, 57.7 million people have voted in addition to nearly 2.9 million voters from abroad.

At least 23.25 million people voted for AK Party, increasing its votes around 4.5 million compared to the June 7 election when AK Party won 18.8 million people’s votes.