Decision to be made on electoral threshold if government’s propositions dismissed: PM Erdoğan
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan greets the crowd prior to an address in Adana’s industrial hub of Ceyhan, Oct. 6. AA photoPrime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has warned the opposition that the government will finalize new regulations on the electoral threshold if alternatives submitted last week in a new democratization package are dismissed.
“They have started to make new calculations. We are making propositions, but [they reject them]. Now we will sit and talk, make a decision and then submit the proposition to Parliament,” Erdoğan said during an address today in Adana’s industrial hub of Ceyhan.
The government suggested three alternatives regarding the electoral system, reviving the debate on the 10 percent threshold, which was mainly instituted to keep pro-Kurdish parties from entering Parliament.
The first alternative is to retain the current system; the second is to lower the 10 percent threshold for a political party to enter Parliament to 5 percent along with narrowing electoral constituencies to five seats.
The third option is to completely abolish the electoral threshold and establish a narrowed constituency model.
However, opposition parties have expressed their dissatisfaction with the narrowed constituency model, which according to many analysts, may favor the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), as it would score first in most of the constituencies.
However, Erdoğan insisted that the options were brought to the table with the aim of ensuring the country’s “stability.” “Coalition governments are harmful for the country. We have always regressed, but with [the AKP government], we have managed to have stability and our economy has become stronger,” Erdoğan said.
Republican People’s Party leader (CHP) Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu declared following the announcement of the package that he favored the “maximum representation of people’s will” in the Parliament and that his party would not stand against the reduction or even the abolition of the threshold.
“[A party] that collected 1 percent of votes should be able to send at least an MP to the Parliament. What would happen? Are the citizens that voted for the party that gained 1 percent of the votes not our citizens?” Kılıçdaroğlu said Oct. 3.