Erdoğan’s gain as Turkish vote coincides with Ramadan? – Asia Times

Erdoğan's gain as Turkish vote coincides with Ramadan? - Asia Times

On March 31, thousands of voters in Turkey will cast ballots to choose leaders in regional elections. These votes are seen as important for both the criticism and the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdoan, who has been in electricity since 2002.

The last time Turkey held local elections, in March 2019, Erdoğan’s ruling Justice and Development Party ( AKP ) lost key cities such as Istanbul and Ankara. It will be attempting to elude them. At the same time, retaining key cities may help revive Turkey’s criticism after it failed to defeat Erdoğan in the 2023 regional and national elections.

How will the March 31 votes go? Since the most recent regional elections, several things have happened, not the least of which was the Covid pandemic and the damaging disasters that erupted in the nation in 2023. However, there is a key difference between this and previous ones. While the votes in 2019 happened before the holy month of Ramadan, the 2024 votes will occur at the top of Ramadan.

Research from 2022 that I co- authored with my partner, Diego Gambetta, suggests that Ramadan can pull up the intensity of religious beliefs, boost the success of spiritual organizations, and also influence the results of elections.

Individuals in Turkey who are traditionally conservatives have a solid base of support for Erdoan’s AKP. This might provide the group a unique advantage. However, the part Ramadan may play in the elections is complicated.

The Muslim holy quarter

The most holy quarter of the Muslim month is Ramadan. It is a day when both donation and community service are expanding as well as religious activities. Muslims abstain from drinking, feeding, smoking and sexual intimacy from sunrise to sunset for a full month.

Ramadan eating is a physically and mentally taxing religious custom. However, a very big majority of Muslims report that they are adhering to the full month of dieting.

The fact that Ramadan’s launch date is determined by the lunar calendar is a unique feature. The solar time is shorter than the thermal time. So, Ramadan’s entire quarter rotates back in the solar time by about 11 times each year. Because of the difference in how long people had quickly during the Ramadan holiday because it occurs between sunrise and sunset, it is up to them.

The variation in evening size over time also depends on latitude. Take, for example, London. A Muslim Londoner fasts for a little under eight hours when Ramadan falls in December ( as happened during the late 1990s ). But, when Ramadan falls in June ( as happened in 2015 ), the eating length is nearly 17 days, a change of nine days.

The length of a Ramadan day in Antakya, Turkey’s southernmost city, is only about five hours ( roughly ten hours in winter and just over 14 hours in summer ).

Would sects defy the law of need?

Researchers can find that the consequences of spiritual training fluctuates as the start date of Ramadan changes. This variant, in turn, helps experts tackle the following longtime cultural medical issue.

As the cost of an exercise increases ( in this case, the physical and mental demands of fasting ), people should, in theory, not been willing to spend as many resources on it, assuming all other remains similar. This is known as the law of desire, according to academics. In the spiritual website, however, something unique seems to happen.

According to research, including mine, the more religious a person is, the more powerful the spiritual business that requires those techniques becomes.

This effect appears to be caused by responsive choices. This is where a person’s commitment to a task is heightened as they slowly increase their effort in it. In fact, the variation in the length of a fast over time simply occurs slowly rather than abruptly.

We is, in theory, see the effects of Ramadan on the electoral cycle if religion rises and religious organizations achieve greater success during and after Ramadan by engaging in lengthy eating periods. Muslim political parties may receive more vote the longer people fast during the Ramadan.

We used data from Turkey to test this prediction in our studies, with a focus on the political votes from 1973 to 2018. We discovered that an increase in the vote share of Islamist political parties by 11 % during the Ramadan fasting period by half an hour. The sooner the vote comes after Ramadan, the stronger the impact of the fast’s period on Muslim seats.

It appears that increasing spiritual engagement increases spiritual beliefs and participation, which in turn increases the number of seats for political parties with a spiritual connotation.

What does occur on March 31?

The fact that Turkey’s regional elections are taking place during Ramadan does aid Islamist political parties get surface, including Erdoan’s AKP, if all else is equal, which obviously is never the case.

However, Ramadan day length in the northern hemisphere peaked in 2019 and has been decreasing since. This could result in a steeper uphill battle for Islamic parties to secure their support over the long term. This is especially true in northern latitudes, where the number of days in Ramadan is shorter ( both within Turkey and beyond ).

Which of these two Ramadan’s opposing effects will be most prominent on March 31? However, polls indicate that the AKP and the opposition are competing in many ways very close.

In such close elections, small factors could shift the balance. Who will be the most generous during Ramadan will soon be revealed.

At University College London, Ozan Aksoy is an associate professor of social science.

The Conversation has republished this article under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.