A Strong Start
In the highly anticipated Turkish Presidential Election of May 14th, 2023, incumbent President Recep Tayyip Erdogan made a strong showing. His political bloc, the People’s Alliance, led by his Justice and Development (AK) party and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), secured 49.4% of the vote1. This was a clear demonstration of Erdogan’s persistent influence and popularity among Turkish voters.
The Power of a Small Margin
Despite falling just short of the 50% threshold required to avoid a runoff, Erdogan remained in a commanding position. With just a little more than a half percent increase, Erdogan could secure the presidency for another term. His main opponent, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, trailed with 44.3% of the votes in the first round2, a gap that would require significant effort to close.
Runoff: A Second Chance
The runoff election held on May 28th was an opportunity for Erdogan to consolidate his support and secure a decisive victory. He continued to lead, garnering 49.5% of the vote, while Kilicdaroglu received 44.89%3.
Conclusion: A Testament to Erdogan’s Resilience
The 2023 Turkish Presidential Election underscored Erdogan’s resilience and the trust placed in him by a significant portion of Turkish voters. Despite the need for a runoff, Erdogan’s consistent lead in both rounds sends a clear message of his continued relevance and the confidence the Turkish people have in his leadership.