Estimates for the upcoming 2013 Iran Presidential elections

11 Jun

Iranian politics is notoriously difficult to predict. This is especially true with regards to elections, which these days are increasingly managed by the regime, as we found out in 2009.

However, it is important to try and see where things are likely to go in the elections, based on one’s own perceptions, assumptions and reading of the regime.

If you get it right, then great. If you get it wrong, then afterwards at least you have a reference point to go back to to see where and how you went wrong. What assumptions you should have made but didn’t, who in the regime you should have listened to instead, and what clues you missed (among other things).

So here is how I believe (and assume) that things will turn out in the upcoming Iranian elections.

If a clear winner is determined in the first round, it is my estimate that Qalibaf has the biggest chance of winning. Reason? because between the conservatives when it comes to being a technocrat, he is seen as being the most competent. On top of that, and more importantly, he has good relations with Khamanei and parts of IRGC senior leadership.

If there is no clear winner in the first round and elections go into a second round,

If:

Jalili is in the second round runoffs , he would win against any candidate. Reason? because Khamenei and the IRGC have decided that its more important for them to have a yes man. It would be difficult to convince the public that Jalili genuinely won  majority of votes in the 1st round (because he is unknown). So in order to shore up his legitimacy a second round is needed.

Or if:

– Qalibaf is in the run off and its not Jalili who he is running against, then Qalibaf would win. Reason? Khamenei and the IRGC believe that having a runoff is important to boost the legitimacy of the elections by making them look like a tight race. Letting Qalibaf win under such a scenario would enable them to strike two targets with one stone: giving them the already mentioned advantages of Qalibaf, plus more legitimacy for the elections process.

There is very little chance that Rowhani would win the elections (less than 10%). Reason? He views re: relations with West and need for compromise over the nuclear program to save Iran’s economy are out of line with that of the supreme leader and the IRGC.

The election’s dark horse: Mohsen Rezai. In my opinion, between all candidates, the one who could surprise us like Ahmadinejad did in 2005 elections is him. His combative style regarding the economy and its problems could have won him more support than we realize.

Now lets see where I have gotten it wrong, or right. Time will tell.

4 Responses to “Estimates for the upcoming 2013 Iran Presidential elections”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Two Candidates Quit the Race, Friday’s Election BIG « vineoflife.net - June 13, 2013

    […] Interesting analysis of Iranian elections by Meir Javedanfar, Iranian-born Jew who now lives in Isra… […]

  2. On Iran election day, Obama decides to arm Syrian rebels | The Iran-Israel Observer - June 14, 2013

    […] has now finished in Iran. Lets see what happens. I already addressed the different scenarios which I believe could happen in these elections. Lets see where reality takes us. Apart from that, […]

  3. A surprise called Hassan Rowhani | The Iran-Israel Observer - June 16, 2013

    […] But I did not think that Rowhani would be allowed to win by Khamenei and the IRGC, which is why I gave him less than 10% chance of winning in my estimate, written on the 11th of June. […]

  4. Iranian Moderate Rowhani Wins Presidential Election Tikun-Olam Tikun Olam-תיקון עולם - June 16, 2013

    […] of Tehran mayor, .  He didn’t mention Rowhani’s name once in the entire article.  Writing in his blog, Javedanfar offered Rowhani a 10% chance of becoming president.  The “analyst” did […]

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