The second round of elections saw Recep Tayyip Erdoğan defeat Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu to gain a second term in the Presidency, surviving an election cycle that saw AK Party lose power in major cities like Istanbul and Ankara in 2021 in local elections, as well as losing 27 seats in the Parliament two weeks ago.
On May 14th, the 1st round of elections in Türkiye saw none of the three Presidential candidates secure the required 50+1%. The lack of a majority created a second round of elections between the top two candidates from the first round.
The second round of elections came down to Recep Tayyip Erdoğan & Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu. During the first election, Erdoğan had taken first place in the first round with 49.52% of the vote, missing the majority by less than half a percent. Kemal placed second, gathering 44.88% of the vote.
The second round election took place on May 28th. Turnout expectantly dropped from the first round. Nearly 2 million fewer votes from the first round. The drop was expected to hurt Erdoğan. However, it did not affect Erdoğan’s ability to win, gathering 52.16% of the vote, an increase of 591,000 votes from the first round. Kemal garnered 47.84% of the vote, an increase of 838,000 votes from the first round. This was Erdoğan’s first time in a runoff election showing a drop in support for him since becoming President in 2014.
This election was all about the economic situation of the country. The cost of living in the nation has skyrocketed. The cost of food has more than doubled over the last two years. The national currency, the Lira, has devalued significantly, losing over 44% of its value in 2021 and another 30% in 2022.