Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Eliminate the troublesome

If there was any doubt about political infighting in Iran, the Supreme Leader's recent proposals to eliminate the presidency and give him more power should make those doubts vanish. So much for Khomeini's vaunted Islamic republic.

Iran’s supreme leader floats proposal to abolish presidency
A proposal by Iran’s supreme leader to radically alter the country’s constitution and abolish the presidency is drawing praise from his supporters but criticism from influential politicians.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who was appointed supreme leader for life in 1989 by Shiite Muslim clerics, said in a speech last week that, if deemed appropriate, Iran could do without a president…

Former president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani said publicly Tuesday that the proposal strongly undermines the ideal of an Islamic republic, in which the people elect their leaders…

Under the proposal, Iran would be ruled by Khamenei working in tandem with parliament, which would continue to be directly elected and would appoint one of its members to serve as prime minister…

If implemented, the change would widen Khamenei’s powers. Supporters said it would allow him manage the nation without the current debilitating political squabbles and that nothing would really change, since voters would still elect the parliament…

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