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Turkish polling guru says AKP’s ‘core voter base’ at low point

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Bekir Ağırdır, the general manager of KONDA, one of Turkey’s leading polling companies, said the core voter base of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has gone below 30 percent for the first time in its history, the T24 news website reported on Tuesday.

Speaking to T24, Ağırdır said the AKP’s influence has been weakening while its nationalist ally, the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), has been enjoying an increase.

Ağırdır addressed a recent proposition by AKP officials to work on an amendment reducing the 50 percent threshold for presidential elections to 40 percent.

“Under no circumstances will they be able to sell a 40 to 45 percent threshold plan to the Turkish public,” he told T24.

He also claimed that at least one-third of the AKP’s own voters would now vote against a presidential system of governance, which was passed by a 2017 referendum with the endorsement of the AKP and MHP.

“Nearly 40 percent of the population and 49 percent of youngsters have lost their belief that the country’s problems can be solved by politics,” he said. “Young people are unable to envisage a role for themselves in political mechanisms.”

According to a study published on Tuesday by the İstanbul-based Center for Research on Social Influences (TEAM), AKP voters’ commitment to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been in sharp decline, the Euronews Turkish service reported.

TEAM’s study also said the AKP-MHP alliance has been polling below 50 percent, implying an uncertainty regarding Erdoğan’s re-election chances under a 50 percent system.

The study also noted an apparent hesitancy among voters about former AKP founders like Ahmet Davutoğlu and Ali Babacan who recently parted ways with the party to establish new ones.

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