Turkey’s plunge to authoritarianism

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has served in power for 15 years, 4 as president. As of Sunday June 24th Erdogan won a second term as president with new tyrannical power. In 2016 Turkey’s military attempted a coup to overthrow Erdogan. This military coup failed and Erdogan has since left Turkey in an official state of emergency. He has utilized this to expunge the country’s military and courts of his opposers. Additionally in 2017 Erdogan passed a referendum that abolishes the role of prime minister and nullifies any checks and balances, effectively consolidating the power of the president. His reelection is significant as it was the first election of the new executive presidency.  This new power will allow him to radically reshape Turkey’s government and further consolidate his own power. Many analyst attribute Erdogan’s win to his party’s control over the vast majority of all media. His opponent Muharrem Ince only received one tenth of the media time that Erdogan enjoyed. However despite the fact that the scale was tipped in his direction Erdogan only won 52.5% of the vote. Ince received 30.6% of the vote, which is the most his Republican People’s Party has ever received. This represent the continued opposition that persists against Erdogan. So while Erdogan seem on the verge of becoming a full on dictator, his fight to consolidate more power remains an uphill battle. Erdogan will have to work to gain more public support otherwise he faces the prospect of another military coup.

 

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