By Micah Halpern
Saturday June 15, 2013
Yesterday 50 million Iranians went to vote for president. Ahmadinejad's term has come to an end.
Six candidates ran in this primary election. In a week, the top two contenders will face off in a runoff.
Do not mistake appearance for reality. Yes, there is a popular vote in Iran, but the only vote that actually counts is that of the Grand Ayatollah.
Think of the popular election as a variable that the grand Ayatollah uses to consider when making his decision. On the eve of the election yesterday the Grand Ayatollah Khamenei said: "What is important is that everyone takes part" He was speaking live, on state television, as he cast his ballot in the capital, Tehran.
Of the 6 candidates, only 3 have a chance. One is the mayor of Teheran, Ghalibaf, former head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and their preferred candidate. Another is the protege of Ahmadinejad, a candidate named Meshai. And the last one with any chance is an independent conservative named Jalili.
I predict that Jalili will be the next president of Iran. I choose him because he is both conservative and independent. The Grand Ayatollah can shape him and form him and direct him without outside political influences. He is the Ayatollah's type of man.
In the cases of the others there is far too much external baggage that comes with the candidates. We will see what happens in just a few days.
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