A survey conducted by the Ankara-based pollster Metropoll shows Justice and Development Party (AKP) leader and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan being defeated by current Ankara mayor Mansur Yavaş in a possible presidential election scenario in which Yavaş is running against the incumbent president.
According to Metropoll’s “The Pulse of Turkey” survey conducted in December with the participation of 1,791 people across 28 provinces, Yavaş defeats Erdoğan, garnering 43.9 percent of the nationwide vote, while Erdoğan’s vote remains at 40.7 percent.
Yavaş was elected mayor of Ankara in the 2019 local elections from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), ending the 25-year rule in the city of the AKP and its predecessors. The politician has growing public support due to his fight against corruption and efforts aimed at saving taxpayer dollars.
Many see Yavaş as the opposition parties’ presidential candidate in the next presidential election, scheduled for 2023.
Erdoğan, who was elected president for the first time in 2014, was elected again in 2018. His second election was under a new system of governance, the presidential system, which went into force in following a referendum in 2017, replacing the country’s parliamentary system.
The survey also asked respondents their views about reinstatement of the parliamentary system, with 57 percent saying they are in favor, while 34.5 percent said they prefer the presidential system of governance.
Erdoğan is accused by his critics of creating a one-man rule and destroying the separation of powers under the new system, which has granted him vast powers while weakening parliament.
Erdoğan’s approval rating is cited as 48.1 percent in the survey.
Regarding the distribution of votes among political parties in the event of a general election, the survey showed the AKP vote at 30.6 percent, the CHP at 20 percent, the İYİ (Good) Party at 8.9 percent, the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) at 6 percent, the Deva Party at 1.7 percent and the Gelecek (Future) Party at 1.3 percent, while 21.3 percent of the electorate is undecided.