What’s Parliament Got to do With it? Elections in the Islamic Republic of Iran

Over the last six months, Iran has witnessed an escalating power struggle as conservatives of different ideological stripes and loyalties jockey for influence ahead of the March 2012 parliamentary elections.  On November 18, USIP hosted a distinguished panel of experts on these and other developments on the elections in Iran.

Over the last six months, Iran has witnessed an escalating power struggle as conservatives of different ideological stripes and loyalties jockey for influence ahead of the March 2012 parliamentary elections.  These struggles come on the heels of a public dispute between President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and ultra-hardline supporters of Supreme Leader Khamanei. Sensing an opening, Green Movement leaders are debating prospects for returning to the political arena.

But what kind of arena? What role can Iran’s parliament play given the harsh repression meted out to reformists following the June 2009 presidential elections? Indeed, as the Supreme Leader maneuvers to silence internal critics, can parliament and elections have any political significance?

USIP has put together a panel of distinguished experts to address these and other related questions.

Drawn from USIP’s Iranian Politics Study Group, the panel included:

  • Introductory Remarks
    Daniel Brumberg, Moderator
    Senior Adviser, U.S. Institute of Peace
  • The Evolution of Iran’s Parliamentary System and Reformist Options
     Farideh Farhi, Discussant
  • Electoral Politics in the Islamic Republic
    Yasmin Alem, Discussant
  • The Supreme Leader and Elections In Iran
     Mehrzad Boroujerdi, Discussant

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