60% of Turks are against an executive presidential system, as proposed by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a poll has found.
The proposed rewriting of the Turkish constitution that would grant Erdogan far-reaching powers was supported by 40% of respondents in a poll conducted by Turkey’s Metropoll, with 60% opposing the idea.
Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) currently holds 317 of the 550 seats in Turkey’s parliament, but to put a new constitution to a referendum requires 330 votes, meaning the AKP must win opposition support for it.
Party ratings in the same poll revealed that support across the four main Turkish political parties remain roughly as they were when the current parliament was formed after a snap general election in November. According to the Metropoll findings, the AKP is currently polling at 47.5%, marginally lower than the 49.6% of the popular vote that won them the election last year.
The shortfall in AKP support appears to have been absorbed by the centre-left Republican People’s Party (CHP), with a 1.2 percentage point gain, to 26.5%, on its November support. CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu today said that a rewriting of the constitution and the resultant concentration of power in Erdogan’s hands would “break up the country”.