Parties get out calculators for 39 key constituencies
Nuray Babacan - Umut Erdem - Rifat Başaran - ANKARA
DHA photoThe results of the Nov. 1 snap election in 39 constituencies across the country will play a decisive role as to whether the country will witness a single-party or minority government after the Nov. 1 elections, according to a comprehensive review by the Istanbul-based Association of Democracy Auditors.
In these 39 constituencies, a change of percent of votes between 0.1 and 3 may pave the way for a different allocation of seats compared to the results of the June 7 election.
The Justice and Development Party (AKP) has focused its efforts on winning 18 more seats over the 258 it obtained in June so that it can reach 276 seats in parliament, the number needed for a legislative majority.
The Republican People’s Party (CHP), Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) have also been making intricate calculations to avoid losing critical seats.
The 39 constituencies are located in the provinces of Adana, Adıyaman, Ağrı, Ankara, Amasya, Aydın, Balıkesir, Bayburt, Burdur, Bursa, Çankırı, Çorum, Diyarbakır, Elazığ, Erzincan, Erzurum, Eskişehir, Giresun, Hatay, Iğdır, Istanbul, İzmir, Kahramanmaraş, Kayseri, Kırklareli, Kocaeli, Konya, Malatya, Manisa, Niğde, Ordu, Samsun, Sivas, Şanlıurfa and Van.
“The goal is not increasing the percentage of votes, but to increase the number of seats,” said Mustafa Ataş, the AKP’s executive in charge of the party’s organization.
As the AKP does not see a chance of forming a single-party government according to recent surveys, the party will push for specific provinces. “If necessary, we’ll transport those who want to vote but [are] outside of their provinces at that moment,” Ataş stated.
CHP Deputy Chair Mehmet Bekaroğlu said they had conducted surveys in provinces where their party lost or won by a narrow margin of votes.
“We are campaigning face to face in these provinces,” Bekaroğlu said, noting that they also included some of these provinces on CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu’s agenda of gatherings with citizens before Nov. 1.
MHP Deputy Chair Sadir Durmaz said they had been campaigning “effectively,” to win the Nov. 1 election in constituencies where they lost by a narrow margin of votes.
“We believe that we will increase the number of our deputies. We will make the best of the last week,” Durmaz said.
Noting that they made changes to their candidate lists in the 39 constituencies from June 7 to Nov. 1, HDP spokesperson Ayhan Bilgen said their party was also focused on “one-to-one” contact with voters.
“Particularly by getting in touch with segments who have sympathy for the HDP, but haven’t yet made their decisions to vote for the HDP, we have been explaining how a stronger representation in parliament will make a contribution to the project of peace and living together in Turkey,” Bilgen said.
According to the official results announced on June 18 by the Supreme Election Board (YSK), the AKP received 40.66 percent of the vote, the CHP 25.13, the MHP 16.45 and the HDP 12.96 percent.
Accordingly, the AKP won 258 seats in the 550-seat parliament, followed by the CHP with 132. The MHP and HDP each received 80 seats apiece. As such, the AKP failed to secure the majority in the 550-seat parliament required to rule alone compared to the previous elections in 2011 in which it won almost 50 percent of the vote.
Currently, the CHP holds 131 seats and the MHP holds 79, while two seats are held by independent lawmakers.
When compared to the June 7 parliamentary elections, the number of eligible voters increased by 310,620 people, while the number of expat voters increased by 28,227 people.
In the June 7 elections in İzmir’s 13-seat, 1st electoral district, the CHP received 572,271 votes, the AKP 335,209 and the MHP 164,895 votes. According to the electoral sector’s arithmetic, the CHP lost one seat to the MHP by 1,372 votes.
In Kocaeli, the AKP won six seats, the CHP three, the MHP one and the HDP one. The HDP won 82,469 votes while the MHP scored 163,707 votes. However, the MHP failed to score a second seat by 1,231 votes because of expat votes for the HDP.
In Diyarbakır the HDP scored 10 of 11 seats with 640,687 votes, ahead of the AKP, which had 122,027 votes. As around 64,000 votes are required for a seat, the AKP missed out on an additional seat by 6,111 votes.
In Istanbul’s 1st constituency, from which 31 deputies are elected, the AKP scored 14 seats with 1,265,982 votes, the CHP won 11 seats with 986,503 votes, the MHP obtained three seats with 324,216 votes and the HDP received three seats with 331,848 votes. If it can achieve an additional 22,860 votes, the HDP will receive one of the CHP’s seats.