Ten Million New Turkish Voters in 2011: Where they Come From? How They Voted? What It Means For The Future?

Ali T. Akarca
European Research Studies Journal, Volume XVI, Issue 3, 133-160, 2013
DOI: 10.35808/ersj/398


Between 2007 and 2011 the number of registered voters in Turkey increased by more than ten million, partially due to population increase but mainly due to a change in the voter registration system. Together with nearly three million DP and GP supporters who deserted their parties, the new voters constituted about a quarter of the electorate who participated in the 2011 election. Through descriptive statistics at national, regional and provincial levels, the geographical, demographic, socio-economic and political characteristics of these voters are explored. Then through systems of party vote equations, estimated separately for different regions of the country, how they voted is investigated. The BDP was the main beneficiary of the rise in the registered voters, which were disproportionately located in the Central-east and South-east. This occurred at the expense of the ruling AKP. The DP and GP votes, which were concentrated in the western and central parts of the country, and the new voters in these regions moved mainly to the AKP and CHP. In central provinces, the MHP captured a slice of the new voters and former DP supporters too, but it lost a portion of its own supporters to the CHP in the West.

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