A different path to the presidential system
Before I start writing my scenario, please note that my formula is based on the assumption that opposition parties the Republican People’s Party (CHP) and Nationalistic Movement Party (MHP) will, under no condition, consent to the “presidential system model” suggested by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party). Both of these parties are staunch defenders of the parliamentary system. They cannot even tolerate the mention of it, let alone support the AK Party to pass a system change in the parliament. They will do anything to block it.
When we assume that the CHP and MHP options are expired, then there is one more possibility left. If AK Party still wants to find a partner and pass the motion in the parliament, then the only option is to knock at the door of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP). There does not seem to be any other party but the HDP that is open to negotiate the presidential system.
Thus, in the case that it includes moderated or rationalized demands for “autonomy,” then my scenario is assuming that the most available party to support the presidential model of the AK Party is the HDP.
Now, let us see how this scenario would unfold:
The HDP would disperse separation fears fueled by “ditch terror” and “self-administration” impositions. HDP spokesperson Ayhan Bilgen has said autonomy demands are not contrary to Turkey’s unity and integrity. Demirtaş has been stating at every opportunity anyway that the autonomy idea was suggested as a co-existence model.
As a matter of fact, the only administrative model assuring unity and integrity is not the unitary structure; federal systems also protect unity and integrity.
But, since a partition fear has spilled all over Turkey, since the nation is intimidated by autonomy statements, and since the HDP is responsible for that, because instead of opening a debate with democratic methods, they supported a fait accompli style forcing of self-administration…
The scenario goes that the HDP will notice how concepts such as autonomy are stained, maimed and criminalized through terrorist methods. It will see that society will not adopt it through this method.
The HDP will accept and admit that terror impositions inflict the most harm on Kurds and their legitimate demands for rights. It will totally reject anti-democratic struggle methods and give up maximalist acts. It will agree to and support a model where the staunch practices of the unitary system are relaxed.
On the other hand, the AK Party will eliminate “the efforts to monotype” and authoritarian concerns. Its checks and balances will be installed as well as its assurances.
As a result, they will agree on the European Charter of Local Self-Government, which the CHP has also started defending. Turkey will lift its reservations; a full practice will be introduced.
The central administration will hand over its extra powers to local governments, not the sovereign rights of the state.
Ankara will share its power with local administrations. The extreme centralization of the power in Ankara, the monopolizing of governance will come to an end. Democratization issues will cease to be only election promises and pledges.
This is the midpoint. They will agree at the common ground. This will meet the unitary structure that AK Party, CHP and MHP are so keen on and this will also meet Erdoğan’s unitary president suggestion. The demand of the HDP is also met. A loose unitary presidential system will be formed, not federated but close to a federal model.
Partition and authoritarianism fears will be overcome simultaneously. This will not harm democracy, unity and integrity.
I previously wrote that the scenario did not seem very convincing to me that the path to the presidential system would pass through a parliament without an HDP, while immunity debates are absolutely connected to presidential calculations.
My scenario is more realistic than crazy by-election conspiracies, more possible and for the good of the country, isn’t it?