The elections of June 7, 2015 had the effect of a political earthquake. Turkey’s ruling AKP conceded a sharp drop of 9 percent (from 49.9 to 40.9 percent), losing, after 13 years in power the overall majority of seats. It was the first time the ruling party saw a dramatic fall in support. The AKP’s losses seem even more dramatic considering the opposition parties’ underrepresentation in media and the ruling party’s abuse of public resources.
On 20. January 2012, the Parliament of the Republic of Turkey passed a law concerning new rules and procedure by which Turkey’s future head of state would be elected. According to this law, Turkey’s next head of state was to be elected by popular vote, in lieu of the Parliament, for the first time since Republican Turkey was founded. Based on the official election results, the former Prime Minister and head of the ruling party, the Justice and Development Party (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi, AKP), Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was elected in the first round as the 12th President of the Republic of Turkey for a period of five years, wining more than 52% of the votes on 10. August 2014. The other two candidates were Ekmeleddin İhsanoğlu and Selahattin Demirtaş, who received 38.44% and 9.76% of the votes respectively.