April 23, 2018 | War on the Rocks

Turkey’s Snap Elections: Erdogan’s Improvised Gambit

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared last week that presidential elections will now take place in June – almost 17 months ahead of schedule. While defenders of the strongman president are quick to support his call for snap elections as ‘a calculated move, for which the costs and benefits have been carefully weighed up,’ the move actually exposes Erdogan’s deep-rooted insecurities. In his latest for War on the Rocks, FDD Senior Fellow Aykan Erdemir details why Erdogan’s unprecedented betrayal of Turkish laws to clear a path for his unrestricted presidency invites complete political upheaval. 

An excerpt from the op-ed in War on the Rocks follows:

“As Erdogan rushes Turkey toward snap elections, chaos looms. Institutions, parties, and candidates scramble to make do in the absence of even the basics, such as a legal framework, clear electoral rules, and an election calendar. One thing is certain: Turkey’s president, who has no exit strategy in politics, needs to go now. And neither he nor his far-right partners in crime could care less if their reckless maneuvers precipitate an economic crisis or become the final nail in the coffin of Turkey’s flailing electoral democracy.”

Read the full piece in War on the Rocks here.

Aykan Erdemir is a former member of the Turkish parliament and a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. Follow him on Twitter @aykan_erdemir.

Follow the Foundation for Defense of Democracies on Twitter @FDD. FDD is a Washington-based nonpartisan research institute focusing on national security and foreign policy.