August 23, 2007


Ahmedinejad held to election promises (Kimia Sanati, 8/24/07, Asia Times)

A poll run by the Tehran-based news website Baztab on the second anniversary of the elections that brought Ahmadinejad to power found his popularity plummeting. The poll of 20,000 people showed that 62.5% of respondents who voted for Ahmadinejad in 2005 would not elect him president again. And only 3.5% of those who did not vote for him said they would now vote for him for the presidency.

"The advocates of the [hardline] Ahmadinejad administration claim the Baztab poll was biased, but even a poll run by Fars news agency, which is known to be very pro-government, revealed that 44.6% of the respondents to the poll believed his economic policies had not had any positive effects on the economy, compared [with] 30.3% who believed he had made things better," a reformist activist in Tehran said on the condition of anonymity. Another 25.1% said things are worse economically than they were before Ahmadinejad came to power, said the activist.

"His campaign was mainly focused on promises of fighting corruption and improving people's lives economically," the activist said. "He claimed the oil money was being misappropriated and wasted. These were on the top of the list of the millions of ordinary people outside the minority hardline religious establishment, whose main concerns were issues of religious morality and religious values. The president's failure to deliver his economic promises has naturally disillusioned this large group of voters, who find themselves under even greater pressure than before.

"Voters clearly stated their disappointment with the government last December when they refused to vote for the electoral lists that the president's allies had put out for city councils and the Assembly of Experts. Things are worse now. Gasoline rationing and the problems it has caused in transportation, tourism, agriculture and many other areas are greatly contributing to people's disillusionment with the government," he said.

Darned electorates.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 23, 2007 8:02 AM

It's a problem here, too. Apart from the hard-core Christianist right, most thoughtful Americans just want to pull out of Iraq, enjoy cradle-to-grave health care, save social security, give same-sex couples the right to marry, provide easy access to abortion, help the undocumented, and have stronger gun control.

Gee, I guess Hitchens is right: Chimpy Bushitler, er, I mean God, is not great.

Posted by: Ed Bush at August 23, 2007 9:12 AM