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Thaksin Allies In Thai Election Landslide: Exit Polls


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#1 webfact

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:09:43

Thaksin allies in Thai election landslide: exit polls
by Daniel Rook

[BANGKOK, July 3, 2011 (AFP) - Allies of Thailand's fugitive ex-leader Thaksin Shinawatra scored a landslide election win Sunday, exit polls showed, in a stunning comeback after years of turmoil sparked by his ouster in a coup.

The vote was the first major electoral test for the elite-backed government since mass demonstrations by Thaksin's "Red Shirt" supporters last year paralysed Bangkok and unleashed the worst political violence in decades.

Amid fears that an opposition victory could trigger more deadly protests or another coup, Thaksin called on all sides to respect the outcome of the ballot in which official results were expected to be announced within hours.

"All parties must respect the people's decision otherwise our country cannot achieve peace," the former billionaire telecoms tycoon told Thai television by telephone from his base in Dubai.

"I think people want to see reconciliation. They want to move forward," he said. "We will not seek revenge."

Thaksin's Puea Thai Party was headed for a decisive majority with 313 seats out of 500, against 152 for Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva's Democrats, according to Suan Dusit University. Other exit polls painted a similar picture.

Thaksin's sister Yingluck Shinawatra, who he tapped to become the opposition's candidate for premier, is now set to become Thailand's first female prime minister.

"Thaksin has called to congratulate me and said there was a tough job ahead," a smiling Yingluck told jubilant supports at the Puea Thai Party's headquarters in the Thai capital.

"Thank you to the people who came out to vote,"said the 44-year-old telegenic businesswoman, a political novice who Thaksin has described as his "clone".

Toppled by the military in 2006 and now living in self-imposed exile to avoid a jail term for corruption, Thaksin nevertheless dominated the election in Thailand, where he remains a hugely divisive figure.

He is adored by rural voters for his populist policies while in power such as cheap healthcare and microcredit schemes, but hated by the ruling elite who see him as corrupt, authoritarian and a threat to the revered monarchy.

The election is seen as a major test of the kingdom's ability to emerge from its long political crisis, which has seen years of street protests by Thaksin's "Red Shirt" supporters and the rival "Yellow Shirt" royalists.

More than 170,000 police were deployed to secure the vote, but it appeared to proceed peacefully. Long queues were seen at polling stations in what was one of the country's most hotly contested election in decades.

Political observers had said that a close result could fuel a fresh round of street protests and possibly another military takeover, but a clear win by the opposition will make it harder for the generals to justify seizing power.

The Puea Thai party has proposed an amnesty for convicted politicians -- a move apparently aimed at bringing Thaksin home, where he faces terrorism charges in connection with the April-May 2010 protests.

More than 90 people, mostly civilians, died in a series of street clashes between mostly unarmed red-clad protesters loyal to Thaksin and government soldiers firing live ammunition in the streets of the capital.

Many doubt the Bangkok-based establishment in government, military and palace circles would allow the one-time owner of Manchester City football club to come back as a free man.

If Thaksin tries to return the army may "strike back", said Thai academic Pavin Chachavalpongpun, of the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore.

"If he sets foot in Thailand the military could accuse him of coming back and trying to create disunity among Thais."

Asked about his plans, Thaksin said Sunday he hoped to see his daughter marry in Thailand in December.

"I don't have to return home soon. I can stay here, but I just really want to attend my daughter's wedding. I don't want to cause trouble by returning home."

The military is a constant wildcard in a nation that has seen almost as many coups as elections. The judiciary also has a record of intervening in politics.

Thaksin or his allies have won the most seats in the past four elections, but the courts reversed the results of the last two polls.

British-born Abhisit took office in a 2008 parliamentary vote after a court ruling threw out the previous administration, and he was accused by his foes of being an unelected puppet of the military and the establishment.

His Democrat Party, with traditional support in Bangkok and the south, has not won a general election in nearly two decades. Even so there was a sense of disbelief at its headquarters at the results of the exit polls.

"I don't believe it," deputy premier Suthep Thaugsuban told AFP. "If people want our country to move in that direction I have to surrender."


-- ©Copyright AFP 2011-07-03 | AFP News Sponsor
Published with written approval from AFP.


#2 animatic

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:12:26

They may not realize it now, but they will eventually.
It is a sad day for Thailand.

#3 Oberkommando

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:12:52

Hope the bitters don't blow a gasket at what was a very predictable result.

:lol:

#4 Oberkommando

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:14:47

Shows how out of touch the Thai Visa news section regulars are with the opinions of the majority of Thai people IMO.

Great day for Thailand - putting the military and elite firmly in their places once and for all.

#5 drronnie

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:15:43

They may not realize it now, but they will eventually.
It is a sad day for Thailand.


They wont care as long as they receive the handouts. And when Thailand turns in a Thaksin autocraty they will cheer and clap,

#6 animatic

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:16:23

It just stalls the upheaval till Thaksin tries to come home all sins forgiven.

#7 TomnearCentral

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:17:22

They may not realize it now, but they will eventually.
It is a sad day for Thailand.


I did not fell this sick for a very long time. Simply do not understand how apparently also a lot of people that you would consider "educated" voted for this circus. How can they forget that easily???

Only good thing coming out of all this is going to be that their dreams will soon turn in nightmares for a lot of people and that is when hopefully they will realized what kind of mistake they made voting for them....

As far as Yingluck, I give her at a maximum of 6 month and then she will disappear from the political arena...but PLEASE, let us all enjoy at least one interview of her on BBC Hard Talk or similar before she is gone, will you! ;-)

#8 CosmicSurfer

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:19:06

Reuters calls Landslide Win for Phua Thai - http://www.reuters.c...E76013T20110703

CS

#9 Jingthing

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:19:51

Shows how out of touch the Thai Visa news section regulars are with the opinions of the majority of Thai people IMO.

Great day for Thailand - putting the military and elite firmly in their places once and for all.

Thaksin is the elite. And now expect Thailand to be under his one family rule for decades. North Korea, Thai style. Be afraid.

#10 Oberkommando

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:20:45

As far as Yingluck, I give her at a maximum of 6 month and then she will disappear from the political arena...but PLEASE, let us all enjoy at least one interview of her on BBC Hard Talk or similar before she is gone, will you! ;-)


I agree. Abhisit got absolutely owned on Hard Talk last week, I doubt she'll fare any better.

#11 Jingthing

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:20:52

Only good thing coming out of all this is going to be that their dreams will soon turn in nightmares for a lot of people and that is when hopefully they will realized what kind of mistake they made voting for them....

It will be too late. Total power will be solidified. Democracy is DEAD in Thailand, starting today.

#12 drronnie

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:20:57


Shows how out of touch the Thai Visa news section regulars are with the opinions of the majority of Thai people IMO.

Great day for Thailand - putting the military and elite firmly in their places once and for all.

Thaksin is the elite. And now expect Thailand to be under his one family rule for decades. North Korea, Thai style. Be afraid.


Right. The Thai have just chosen a new master same but worse than the old master.

#13 rubl

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:22:06

With PTP 313, Dem's 152, all other parties seem to have been more than decimated. BJT, CPPP, CTP had 89 seats, but go down to less than 35? Ah well, maybe the quality of polls hasn't improved yet ;)

#14 webfact

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:22:14

Pheu Thai leads in 3 exit polls

The Pheu Thai Party appeared to win a landslide victory according to three exit polls.

The surveys of voters after they cast their vote, the Pheu Thai would win more than 290 House seats.

The survey by Suan Dusit Poll found that the Pheu Thai would capture 313 MPs while the Democrat would win 152 MPs.

The survey by Sripathum University found that the Pheu Thai would win 290 MPs and the Democrat would capture 140 MPs.

The survey by Assumption University found that the Pheu Thai would win 299 MPs and the Democrat would capture 132 MPs.


-- The Nation 2011-07-03



#15 Jingthing

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:22:19


As far as Yingluck, I give her at a maximum of 6 month and then she will disappear from the political arena...but PLEASE, let us all enjoy at least one interview of her on BBC Hard Talk or similar before she is gone, will you! ;-)


I agree. Abhisit got absolutely owned on Hard Talk last week, I doubt she'll fare any better.

She'll never go on Hard Talk! She isn't qualified for that. She's more like a "twitter" leader. And Abhisit handled that very well, much have watched different interviews. Apparently, Thai voters don't watch Hard Talk.

#16 bangkokrick

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:24:19

Shows how out of touch the Thai Visa news section regulars are with the opinions of the majority of Thai people IMO.

Great day for Thailand - putting the military and elite firmly in their places once and for all.

You are very naive if you think that this result will change things.

#17 Jingthing

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:24:29



Shows how out of touch the Thai Visa news section regulars are with the opinions of the majority of Thai people IMO.

Great day for Thailand - putting the military and elite firmly in their places once and for all.

Thaksin is the elite. And now expect Thailand to be under his one family rule for decades. North Korea, Thai style. Be afraid.


Right. The Thai have just chosen a new master same but worse than the old master.

If it is true that Asian cultures can't help themselves but to choose to be led by authoritarian masters, OK, but why choose such a clearly corrupt one? There is such a thing as benevolent dictatorship. That's not what Thais are getting here. A historic day, NOTHING to celebrate now, but the snookered masses will need some time to realize that.

#18 drronnie

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:25:07



As far as Yingluck, I give her at a maximum of 6 month and then she will disappear from the political arena...but PLEASE, let us all enjoy at least one interview of her on BBC Hard Talk or similar before she is gone, will you! ;-)


I agree. Abhisit got absolutely owned on Hard Talk last week, I doubt she'll fare any better.

She'll never go on Hard Talk! She isn't qualified for that. She's more like a "twitter" leader. And Abhisit handled that very well, much have watched different interviews. Apparently, Thai voters don't watch Hard Talk.


Most Thai voters would not even understand Abhisit if he talks in Thai. They only understand free handouts. I agree with Animatic. Democrarcy is dead in Thailand

#19 bartender100

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:25:13


Shows how out of touch the Thai Visa news section regulars are with the opinions of the majority of Thai people IMO.

Great day for Thailand - putting the military and elite firmly in their places once and for all.

Thaksin is the elite. And now expect Thailand to be under his one family rule for decades. North Korea, Thai style. Be afraid.



I live here before during Taksins last reign while the airport, skytrain and underground were finally getting built, never noticed anything sinister, only problem for me was the bars closing earlier, but get used to that again now, I don't think a women PM and naughty nightlife going to mix to well

#20 swerv

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:26:06

They may not realize it now, but they will eventually.
It is a sad day for Thailand.


A very sad day. This is not a democracy, it is all about money.
Last night my g/f's mother confirmed that all 7 members of her family and virtually everyone in the village (Korat) received 300thb each.
It is a bloody disgrace.

#21 tragickingdom

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:27:15

Champaign for Abhisit, he made it six losses in a row. A great achievement. And the win seems to be big enough for thr courts and army to think twice of messing again with the good people of Thailand.

#22 Jingthing

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:28:36

Maybe the courts can invalidate this if massive PT corruption is found. Yes that would be violent, but is that worse than allowing Thaksin to take total power. And you know their family will NEVER let it go again, once burned, you know.

#23 rgs2001uk

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:28:48


Only good thing coming out of all this is going to be that their dreams will soon turn in nightmares for a lot of people and that is when hopefully they will realized what kind of mistake they made voting for them....

It will be too late. Total power will be solidified. Democracy is DEAD in Thailand, starting today.


JT, dont know if you remember the posters that were all over the place in the early '90s,
the ones proclaiming, "No More Military Dictatorship In Thailand".
Havent seen them around for years, may well be the Thais know more than we do.

#24 Bkkorupcountry

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:28:55

Shows how out of touch the Thai Visa news section regulars are with the opinions of the majority of Thai people IMO.

Great day for Thailand - putting the military and elite firmly in their places once and for all.


It also shows how fundamentally different Asian and Western cultures and values are. This is something that a lot of farang posters overlook. You may be married to a Thai. You may have been living here for 20 years. But still, you grew up in a completely different society, with different morals, values and ethics. What's right for the goose may not be right for the gander. You may treat this country as your home. The Thais may treat you as one of them. But, you are and will always be a foreigner and trying to force your values and ethics down the Thai people's throat will merely make them resent you more.

#25 Jingthing

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Posted 2011-07-03 15:29:10

Champaign for Abhisit, he made it six losses in a row. A great achievement. And the win seems to be big enough for thr courts and army to think twice of messing again with the good people of Thailand.

They may be good, but SMART, they ain't.





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