Egypt’s presidential election is underway. The election pits Mubarak supporter Ahmed Shafik against the Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohamed Morsi. People are voting, and soon Egypt will have a new president.
That president will be Mohamed Morsi.
It’s very obvious that Morsi will win. In fact, he should crush his opponent.
The fundamental reason why Morsi will win is because his opponent Shafik is openly and proudly against the revolution. However, a strong majority of the Egyptian people are in favor of the Egyptian Revolution.
Shafik’s not shy about it at all. Apart from being Mubarak’s last Prime Minister, Shafik has threatened to stop protests by cutting the electricity off in Tahrir Square.
Now, there is a substantial part of Egypt’s population that likes this idea. People are getting tired of constant protests. They’re tired of the rise in crime ever since the revolution. And not everybody in Egypt hated Mubarak.
Shafik will get the votes of Mubarak’s former supporters. He’ll get the vote of those Egyptians drained by the revolution, the people who don’t like the crime and chaos nowadays and want things to go back to the way they used to be. Shafik can also count on Egypt’s Christian population, which numbers from 10% to 20% of the population and has suffered since the revolution. These groups (which overlap) constitute a substantial part of Egypt’s population. There’s a reason why Shafik got the second-most number of votes in the first round, after all.
The problem is that all these groups added together do not constitute a majority of the Egyptian population. Far from it. The majority of the Egyptian people support the revolution and hate Mubarak. That is why Morsi will win the election.
Shafik’s first-round results are more like a ceiling of his support than a floor. He will not go much above it. One is reminded of the electoral performance of the Communist Party in France before the fall of the Soviet Union. Time and again the French communists would get a good 30% of the vote in the first-round. But when it came to the run-off elections the communists would always get smashed, because the other 70% of France would never vote communist. (In fact, France’s run-off system was designed specifically to weaken the Communist Party this way – and it worked).
There is one possible way in which Shafik will win, and that is voter fraud directed by the military. It’s a distinct possibility; after all, the Mubarak-packed Egyptian courts have already dissolved Parliament.
This would be the worst of all worlds, and one sincerely hopes that it will not happen.