Iran’s Presidential Election
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)
On June 18, Iranians will elect a new president.
Incumbent President Hassan Rouhani is ineligible to run again after serving two consecutive four-year terms.
A former president can again seek the nation’s highest elective office.
To qualify, a presidential aspirant must be an Iranian national with “administrative capacity and resourcefulness, (as well as) qualities of trustworthiness and piety.”
Candidates must also support Islamic Republic of Iran principles and Islam.
They must be approved by six theologians and six legal experts.
If no presidential aspirant wins a majority of the vote, a runoff is held between two candidates receiving most support.
Under constitutional law Article 113, Iran’s president is the nation’s chief executive — responsible for implementing the law of the land “except in matters directly concerned with the office of the Leadership.”
Subject to parliamentary approval, the president is empowered to appoint ministers and envoys, as well as sign agreements with other nations.
The chief executive is also tasked with administering national planning, the budget, and state employment affairs, along with heading the Supreme National Security Council that’s mandated to protect Iranian sovereignty and territorial integrity.
The president serves as chairman of Iran’s Supreme Council of the Cultural Revolution.
The body is responsible for Iran’s education system and preserving its Islamic culture.
Four aspirants are competing for the nation’s highest elected office on June 18 — after three others dropped out of the race for lack of enough public support.
Remaining ones include:
Judiciary chief Ebrahim Raisi, current Chief Justice of Iran
Amir-Hossein Ghazizadeh, Iranian Parliament First Deputy Speaker
Abdolnaser Hemmati, former Central Bank of Iran Governor
Mohsen Rezaei, former IRGC Commander-in-Chief, current Expediency Council Secretary
According to recent polling data reported by Press TV, Raeisi is far and away most popular among the above aspirants with 57.3% voter support.
On election day, most current Press TV-reported data has Raeisi support at 68.9% — showing he’s overwhelmingly favored to become Iran’s next president.
Rezaei, Hemmati, and Ghazizadeh-Hashemi have less than 11% support among them, another 18.3% undecided.
Raisi is clearly favored to succeed Rouhani when results of Friday’s election are known.
Press TV explained that Iranian elections “are governed by both constitution(al) and…election laws.”
Local communities administer them on their own.
According to Election Law, Iran’s Interior Ministry and Constitutional Council are the two main bodies in charge of the process.
The former manages elections together with local communities.
The latter operates in a supervisory capacity.
It’s empowered to “nullify or suspend” an election nationwide or in a specific area or polling station in case of suspected fraud.
In early June, one projection estimated voter turnout at around 45% with about two-thirds support for Raeisi.
On Thursday, President Rouhani urged Iranians to turn out in large numbers, saying:
“In order for a president to be able to strongly deal with the domestic and international problems, the vote of people and their presence would be of decisive impact,” adding:
“Enemies and ill-wishers around the world want the election queues to be empty.”
On Wednesday, Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei slammed what he called “satanic powers and power centers that have opposed Iran’s Islamic Revolution over the past decades,” stressing:
Notably in the US, they’ve “sought to tarnish people’s minds and have sought to interfere in Iran’s elections” unsuccessfully,” adding:
“The people’s participation will give more prestige to the Islamic Republic establishment.”
It will “strengthen the country in the international arena. If we have less participation…there will be more pressure by enemies.”
According to spokesman for Iran’s Guardian Council, Abbas Ali Kadkhodaei — its Constitutional Council to protect and advance the nation’s cultural, social, political, and economic interests — women may register to run for president.
No Iranian women ran for the Islamic Republic’s highest elective office so far since its establishment in 1979, what’s likely to change ahead.
In the US, Victoria Woodhull was the first woman to run for president — in 1872, 96 years after America’s establishment.
In the nation’s 245-year history, no woman was ever elected to serve as US president.
Incumbent Kamala Harris is the first ever US female vice president — selected, not elected.
A Final Comment
Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh explained that arrangements were made for Iranian ex-pats to vote at over 230 polling stations abroad on Friday, adding:
Ballot boxes are available in 133 foreign countries where Iran has a diplomatic mission, including the US, adding:
“We (very much want voting to take place) in three countries, including Canada, Singapore and Yemen,” but their ruling authorities “ha(ve) not provided” polling stations “for various reasons.”
In Canada, “(w)e could not…install ballot boxes…due to sabotaging (by the Trudeau regime) and lack of responsibility of officials of this country to respond to demands of the Islamic Republic of Iran in this regard.”
On Friday, over 200 observers accepted invitations to monitor polling.
More than 160 foreign journalists received visas to report election news in-country.
Over 59 million men and women aged-18 or older may vote in Iranian elections — at more than 72,000 polling stations nationwide.
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My two Wall Street books are timely reading:
“How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion, and Class War”
“Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity”