Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Thursday, January 28, 2016

And the qualified candidates are…

Here is the first report on approving candidates for next month's Majlis elections.

'Reality is even worse': reformist hopefuls banned from Iran's parliamentary poll
Iran’s Guardian Council, which vets candidates for elections, has failed to qualify 40% of more than 12,000 candidates for parliamentary elections on 26 February, ILNA news agency has reported.

Reformists told Tehran Bureau that those blocked included the vast majority of their hopefuls. “I predicted that the Guardian Council would massively disqualify the reformists,” said Sadegh Zibakalam, professor of political science at Tehran University. “But the reality is even worse.”

According to Hossein Marashi, a member of the Reformists’ Policy Council, which was set up in October to coordinate efforts for the parliamentary poll, out of the total 3,000 reformist candidates, only 30, or 1%, have been qualified…

Two of Rafsanjani’s children, Mehdi and Fatemeh, are among those not qualified, as is Morteza Eshraghi, grandson of the founder of the Islamic Republic Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini…

After gathering information on each candidate from four bodies; the intelligence ministry, the police, the justice ministry and the Interior Ministry, The Guardian Council’s Central Board of Supervision announced on 17 January that it had disqualified 25% of would-be candidates…

The council, consisting of six theologians appointed by the supreme leader and six Islamic jurists, has often been strict on vetting candidates. For the last parliamentary election, held in March 2012, 40% out of nearly 5,500 would-be candidates were not qualified…

The extent of disqualifications has surprised some officials, including… [President] Rouhani…

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