Iran’s Peculiar Election: The Conservative Wave Rolls On

Issue Date October 2005
Volume 16
Issue 4
Page Numbers 9-22
file Print
arrow-down-thin Download from Project MUSE
external View Citation

Read the full essay here.

In June 2005, Iranians went to the polls in what proved to be the most intensely contested of the nine presidential elections that the Islamic Republic has held since 1980. The 2005 vote was also the first to go to a runoff, as the June 17 first round ended with no candidate having surpassed the 50 percent threshold needed for an outright victory. In the June 24 second round, Tehran mayor Mahmoud Ahmedinejad was elected president with 62 percent of the vote against former president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani. The official turnout reported for both rounds was around 60 percent, which is relatively high for Iran, albeit far below the highwater-mark 83 percent turnout that was recorded during the presidential balloting of 1997. The election marked the second transfer of the presidential office from one occupant to another since the 1989 death of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the founder of the Islamic Republic.

About the Author

Vali Nasr teaches Middle East and South Asian politics at the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School. His latest books are State and Democracy in Iran (with Ali Gheissari, 2006) and The Shi’a Revival: How Conflicts Within Islam Will Shape the Future (2006).

View all work by Vali Nasr