Winners and losers from the June 2018 elections

MHP was one of the coalition parties in the early 2000s. Despite the fact that MHP is a political party with strict red lines, I saw its ministers acting and speaking quite freely. Some have even disregarded the coalition protocol. I cannot say that all behaviour and actions exhibited by MHP ministers were totally wrong. Time proved some of their actions completely right.

However, MHP’s unexpected sharp statements can be quite wearisome sometimes, especially for their strategic partners. But, Mr. Bahçeli, the Cahir of the Nationalist Movement Party, is undoubtedly among the winners of this election. The fact that he achieved big success in the early election process, which has been initiated by him to begin with, is certainly worthy of appreciation, considering his confusing statements in the eyes of the public.

On the other hand, we witnessed a significant decline in the number of AKP voters. President Erdoğan said, “We got our people’s massage for us”. Also, as I have mentioned yesterday, the current parliamentary arithmetic does not allow AKP to amend the Constitution even with total MHP seats. That is why a high level of consensus in the parliament will be required for a Constitutional amendment.

Yesterday, a friend of mine called me from the States to ask, “What is going on in Turkey? I am reading some weird stories in the newspapers…” So, I assured him nothing weird is going on and told him that the ruling party was challenged by strong opposition for the first time in a long time, but some people have sadly failed to see that it actually wasn’t strong enough. Heart-breaking but true… Election rallies joined by millions, people’s reactions transforming into the opposition’s energy without becoming a public threat, are all very positive developments in terms of democracy; yet, not enough for Turkey to welcome a new President… Because, I know there are people, who have not casted a single vote since 16 years, but strangely thinking that one rally s/he attended would help things change in Turkey. Such unrealistic expectations only make me laugh.

IYI Party failed to meet the expectations while CHP turned out to be the loser of the elections. Therefore, CHP needs to carry out an immediate performance review to start a fundamental restructuring. If CHP successfully achieves these two goals, then AKP would not feel itself left alone in domestic as well as foreign politics, avoiding statements that violate international standards in economy policies. For a high-quality government, a high-quality opposition is a must. Turkey needs a shadowing cabinet, a constructive opposition in the parliament, constantly creating projects and offering better ideas…

“Becoming an alternative to the Government requires patience and hard work…”

As I am a liberal man, I have the chance to take an unbiased approach to things. CHP did nothing to make people feel happy and excited again, except for nominating Muharrem İnce as President. He has not been very successful at explaining his future deeds in the areas of arts, sports, science, educations and economy; top five things for which he was highly critical of government. I assume CHP has already assigned a team to strongly focus on these areas. The members of this team, however, may not be able to make their voices heard as they are probably considered “risky” by the party administration. I do not know…

In order to become an alternative to the government, you should be close to people, hear them, and listen to their problems to provide a solution, wisely use your party’s values and knowledge, and most importantly, stay in touch with young people and the women.

My late father used to say: “Before coming into power, every political party promises to increase economic welfare, do good deeds”. But people would only believe in them if they can clearly set forth the doctrine they would use in order to realise their promises. Doctrine is the essence of a political party while promises are only the attractive wrapping”. CHP and other opposition parties should remember this.

Apologies if my intention to make you see things from my point of view made you take a longer time to read this report today.