Iraq and Gulf Analysis

Predictions Based on Partial Results: Allawi Emerges as a Possible Front-Runner

Posted by Reidar Visser on Tuesday, 16 March 2010 19:01

This is a back-of-an-envelope calculation and it likely contains several errors. I am especially troubled that I keep getting different electoral dividers from everyone I’m comparing notes with! Nonetheless, the partial results are now getting quite substantial in scope, and for what it may be worth, here follows an attempt at simulating the final outcome if the trends observed so far remain stable. Noteworthy tendencies include the strong performance of Allawi everywhere north of Baghdad: This adds up and puts him in front, since the southern governorates remain subdivided. And with the consistently strong showing by the Sadrists and their marginalisation of ISCI within the INA (see today’s earlier post below), is it not time that Allawi focuses his talks on them rather than on Hakim? It is also interesting to see how small parties who miss the threshold of the electoral divider  lose out completely because of the counting rules (in small constiuencies like Muthanna and Maysan, 10% of the vote may be insufficient to win a seat), and how the big parties are systematically favoured in the count of the last remaining seats. Obviously, for the same reasons, small changes can have a quite dramatic impact on the final results, so there is still much to play for here.

Percentage counted INA SLA INM Unity of Iraq Tawafuq Kurdistan Alliance Other or too close to call
Basra 84 7 14 2 1
Maysan 60 6 4
Dhi Qar 73 9 8 1
Muthanna 75 3 4
Qadisiyya 60 5 5 1
Babel 61 6 7 2 1
Najaf 63 5 7
Karbala 61 3 6 1
Wasit 88 4 5 1 1
Baghdad 60 16 27 24 1
Anbar 78 12 1 1
Salahaddin 63 10 1 1
Diyala 62 2 1 9 1
Nineveh 63 1 21 1 1 6 1
Kirkuk 69 6 6
Arbil 64 10 2+2
Dahuk 61 9 1
Sulimaniya 75 7 6+2+1+1
Total 67 88 90 3 4 39 19

Excluding 8 minority seats and 7 compensation seats

36 Responses to “Predictions Based on Partial Results: Allawi Emerges as a Possible Front-Runner”

  1. Ari said

    Does this include the votes casted abroad and by the army and police?

    The abroad votes will go mostly to Allawi and the Kurdistani List.

  2. Ari said

    You must add to the Kurd party counting the following parties:

    Gorran list

    Komal List

    Yekgurtu Islami Kurdistan List

    + 1 minority vote seat in Nineveh won by a pro-Kurdistan Yezidi Kurd.

  3. Reidar Visser said

    No, not included I think. You’re right that the exile electorate will have a particular political profile, but remember that their votes will be filtered into their home governorates, so the effect may be diluted. Exiled southerners could perhaps help Allawi a little bit in some southern governorates where he is currently lagging behind.

  4. Reidar Visser said

    All the smaller Kurdish parties are listed as “other” at the extreme right. Not enough columns! Minority seats are not included, as per the note at the bottom of the table.

  5. Ari said

    There are many Baghdadis who are living abroad and have voted for Allawi(speacially in Syria,Jordan and Egypt). With them Allawi may win the most seats in Baghadad.

  6. bb said

    On which published results are you basing this seat allocation R?

  7. Reidar Visser said

    These are official IHEC figures, based on counts in the 60-85% range as detailed in the left column.

  8. Ali said

    This would be a disaster, i really hope yout wrong Reidar (-:

  9. bb said

    Thanks, but I can’t find them (published results) anywhere? The last results you published were from “13 provinces” – still based on Basra 63%, Najaf 34% etc. and so on. I can’t locate an update on the IHEC site?

  10. Reidar Visser said

    Bb, please refer to the Arabic section of the IHEC website; the English version is useless. There you will find the updated counts:

  11. Jason said

    Finally, I found some meaningful analysis. Thanks.

  12. Salah said

    This would be a disaster

    There ware two disasters before first Ibrahim al-Jaafari, second and Maliki when the sectarian killing were militias run wild killing Iraqis

  13. Kairena Jameel said

    But Reidar, If Maliki emerges victorious, what are the chances we could see a unity government between Maliki and Allawi, compared to Maliki going back to his old allies in the INA? In the first constellation (Maliki and Allawi join hands) the Sadrists would not necessarily get any posts, would they??

  14. Ari said

    The latest(Kurdish regions) results based on 79% of the count:

    First: Erbil Province

    1- Kurdistan Alliance 298805 votes
    2- Goran “Change List 73780 votes
    3- Kurdistan Islamic Group (KIG) 45234 votes
    4- Kurdistan Islamic Union (KIU) 37113 votes
    5- Turcoman Fronts 1775 votes
    6- Independent Faisal Pasha 811 votes
    7- National Union Alliance 422 votes
    8- Iraqi National Accord 313 votes
    9- Independent Missal Allusi 144 votes

    Second: – Sulaimaniyah Province vote results

    1- Kurdistani Alliance 248023 votes
    2- Goran “Change” List 220141
    3- KIU 79557
    4- KIG 61775
    5- Turcoman Fronts 518 votes
    6- National Union Alliance 552 votes
    7- National Welfare Movement 500 votes
    8- Iraqi National Accord 150 votes
    9- Missal Allusi 89 votes

    Third: – Dahuk Province Vote Results

    1- Kurdistani Alliance 213941 votes
    2- KIU 39987 votes
    3- Goran “Change” List 15834 votes
    4- Independent Nasir Toufic Rashid Beg Berwary list 2706 votes
    5- KIG 2048 votes
    6- Missal Allusi 176 votes
    7- Iraqi National Accord 101 votes

    Fourth: The Al-Iraqiya list comes at the top by 6 additional vote than Kurdistan List in Kirkuk, but if we account the other Kurdish parties votes such as, Goran, KIU and KIG, the Kurdistani list will take the first position by collecting 68224 votes on the rest political lists in the city.

    1- al-Iraqiya list 147683 votes
    2- Kurdistani Alliance 147677 votes
    3- Goran “Change” List 24436 votes
    4-KIU 18441 votes
    5-Iraqi Accords 12671 votes
    6-Iraqi National Accord 9917 votes
    7- State of Law Accord 9485 votes
    8-KIG 5347 votes
    9- Arabic National Front 2853 votes

    Fifth:- The Kurdistani Alliance comes at the second one after the al-Iraqiya list in Nineveh, but close to 10,000 votes of the other Kurdish political parties will be rejected due to they have not achieved the legal votes there.

    1- al-Iraqiya list 462784 votes
    2- Kurdistani Alliance 158108 votes
    3- Iraqi Accord 47994 votes
    4- Iraqi Union Accord 39869 votes
    5- Iraqi National Accord 28340 votes
    6- State of Law Accord 12921 votes
    7- National Union Alliance 7558 votes
    8- Goran List: 6964 votes
    9- Nationa Unified Front: 5688 votes
    10-KIU: 3220 votes
    11-People Union: 2086 Votes
    12-Iraqi National Association: 1610 votes
    13-Iraqi Freedom Movement: 951 votes
    14-National Inventors and Experts: 935 votes
    15-KIG: 929 votes

    Dyala province: Kurdistan Alliance List comes third after Iraqiyah and State of Law.
    1- Iraqiyah: 173989
    2- State of Law: 42218
    3- Kurdistani Alliance: 31494
    4- Iraqi Accord: 18286
    5- Iraqi National Accord: 61220
    6- Goran List: 5558
    7- Iraqi Union Accord: 4761
    8- Justice Association: 2080
    9- People Union: 1557
    10- National Front: 1537
    KIU: 1516
    Ba/gs AKnews

  15. alexno said

    That would certainly be amazing, if Allawi got into power, based on Sunni support.

    But we are far from that yet.

  16. Reidar Visser said

    Kairena, I can imagine that if Maliki pancics he will do what he tried to avoid for so long: Revert to the old idea of a “four-sided” alliance with PUK/KDP/ISCI. The problem is, with Goran making headway and ISCI losing to Sadrists, that may just not be enough. I certainly cannot imagine Allawi sitting comfortably with both Hakim and Maliki in any scenario. Kurdistan/Allawi/Sadr could make sense on the basis of the traditional vision of centralism in all of Iraq except Kurdistan.

  17. Reidar – for what its worth, I’ve done my own province-by-province count, and I also came up with different projections. Before the swerve in vote patterns, in Baghdad, I had Maliki about 15 seats ahead (see my article in World Politics Review for broader analysis). Afterward, I still had Maliki ahead 90-87. There is some arbitrariness in the projections, for sure.

    I have to say I don’t see a Kurds/Allawi/Sadr coalition holding. True, Allawi and Sadr have some overlapping political interests, but no one is more hardline on debaathification than the Sadrists. Maliki is a relative moderate on that issue, which is the most important issue for Sunni Arabs. And the Kurds I don’t see at all; Allawi’s bloc is overwhelmingly Sunni Arab nationalist – I think a majority of his MPs will be from Najayfi and Mutlak’s groups – and Hashemi’s recent “Arab President” comments have just reinforced that. I think Maliki’s weaker than expected performance in Baghdad will strengthen the Kurds and the ISCI-wing of the INA, as they can get more out of Maliki in exchange for support. Even with reduced numbers, those three should still be above 163.

  18. Reidar Visser said

    Allawi has good personal relations with the Kurds, though, and also with the more nationalist-oriented Sadrists. The question I keep asking myself is, what is really left of the “ISCI-wing of the INA” today? 16 seats?

  19. Rena said

    How did you come up with the number seats based on votes by province? Did you use a similar threshold to your 35,000 as in an earlier post?

  20. Salah said

    I can imagine that if Maliki pancics he will do what he

    Yab, he run to recount the votes as he not confident that his assurances and Hamdia Al-Hassani assurances that the voting was near prefects.

    “دولة القانون” يطالب بإعادة الفرز إثر تفوق علاوي

  21. Reidar Visser said

    Rena, the electoral divider differs from governorate to governorate because it is the function of the participation (total votes cast) divided by the number of available seats (which in turn supposedly reflect demographics, albeit with a good deal of horse-trading worked into it). In practice it ranges between 25,000 and 45,000, mostly around 35,000. In the model above I calculated separate electoral dividers for each governorate using actual numbers of total votes in the partial counts to extrapolate total votes in an imaginary finished count.

  22. David Harmis said

    I agree with Kirk Sowell the new government will be State of Law + Kurdistan Alliance + ISCI. Due to the strong showing of INM and Sadr the coalition may need to inculde other non-sadr factions of the INA, Change, and some of the religous minority seats.

    Estimated Count and Vote (based on at least 56%-88% of each province). The vote count is based on IHEC PDF files including some of the more recent files. Seat totals are based on an electoral threshold for each province. Votes divided by number of general seats equals electoral threshold. See the IHEC seat allocation pdf in the regulations section for details on this. If I understand the compensation seats correctly they will split SOL 2 INA 2 INM 2 Kurds 1.

    Votes The first number is the part list number.

    State of Law Coalition 337 1,837,622
    Al Iraqiya /National Movement 333 1,705,496
    Iraqi National Alliance 316 1,403,975
    Kurdistan Alliance 372 827,214
    Change 329 277,927
    Iraq Unity Coalition 348 198,651
    Iraqi Accordance 338 180,828
    Islamic Union of Kurdistan 315 137,841
    Kurdistan Islamic Group 352 77,986
    Others 422,996
    Total: 7,070,536

    Party or Coalition Seats
    State of Law Coalition 92
    Iraq National Movement 90
    Iraqi National Alliance 69
    Kurdistan Alliance 41
    Change 9
    Iraqi Accordance 6
    Iraq Unity Coalition 4
    Islamic Union of Kurdistan 4
    Kurdistan Islamic Group 2
    Religious Minority (Quota) 8
    Others 0
    Total: 325

    Mr. Visser do you or one of your readers know of an English language list of all parties? As the votes come in some of the smaller parties may manage to gain a seat.

  23. Reidar Visser said

    David, I don’t think there’s any disagreement as to the rules for computing the electoral divider, it’s just a question of agreeing on the total number of (valid) votes cast in each governorate. This is where different extrapolations at different stages of the count yield slightly different numbers, though most governorates seem to come out in the 30,000-35,000 range, with the Kurdish ones and Kirkuk higher.

    I am slightly curious as to why you (and many press sources) list the totals nationwide, which surely, except for their role in the process of computing the 7 compensation seats, are irrelevant (“Gore won the popular vote”) for the final outcome?

    I do not track the English materials of the IHEC and would never trust any of it (which is a general rule for any Iraqi official document translated into English).

  24. Rena said

    Reidar, Thanks for the guidance on tabulating the electoral divider. I’ve been able to locate the turnout percentages but I can’t seem to find details on either the total number of registered voters or number of voters. Do you mind pointing me in the right direction? Doesn’t matter if it is in English or Arabic. Many thanks, Rena

  25. Reidar Visser said

    Rena, I simply counted the votes by adding up the votes in the results and then extrapolated total figures using the reported counting levels in per cent.

  26. Zahra said

    Based on today’s results, I have 86 for SOL, 86 for INM, 69 for INA and 39 for KA. It is just so close. It seems like Iraq might have to head for another national unity government, and given how polarised these groups are, and how unlikely it is that they can get on with each other, I can’t see how that would be productive!

    Every combination I try to think of has many problems. But I guess Iraq is a new democracy and fragmentation is very natural. I hope we can at least move in the right direction…

  27. Jason said

    Mr. Visser,

    Wouldn’t a SLA/INA/Kurd coalition be uselessly divided when it came to actual voter issues? Will Maliki and Sadr agree to Kurd plans to annex Iraqi territory and oil wealth? Will Maliki and the Kurds tolerate Sadr’s incompetence and plans to drive out the Americans and make Iraq (or at least given ministries) his corrupt clerical theocracy? Will Maliki step down to pacify the hard feelings from prior disputes with Sadr and the Kurds?

    Every analysis starts with the assumption that the SLA and INM would never consider a coalition. But don’t their platforms of national unity and security have more in common? Between them, isn’t that the clear mandate of nearly 60% of the electorate? Wasn’t the squabble over de-Baathification mere pre-election theater (wasn’t Maliki in favor of reconciliation before al Lami forced him to cover his conservative flank?)

    Am I totally naive to continue to pray for a nationalist coalition pulled primarily from SLA/INM, with a lesser-known technocrat for PM that minimizes Kurdish and INA influence?

  28. bb said

    The national %s are significant because one tell tell at a glance whether there has been a clear shift in the voting patterns from the previous election in Dec 05.

    As it stands, so far there has been not much of a shift at all. If this is the case, then the governorate %s will also confirm that at the end of the day.

    In other words, if the UIA and Kurdish parties hadn’t split, and if the Sunni/nationalist parties hadn’t united then we would be looking at a rerun of the 05 result. Overwhelmingly, shia voted for shia, sunni arabs for sunni arabs and kurds for kurds and Allawi’s coalition maximised the sunni vote into one bloc while the shia parties and the kurdish parties divided theirs.

    It was always a danger for the UIA that a split would endanger their plurality to either the Kurds, if they stayed united (which they didn’t), or to a united Sunni bloc, and that is what has happened.

  29. Reidar Visser said

    Bb, I have myself raised the question of the possible “Sunnification” of Iraqiyya but don’t go as far as you do because Allawi still has a significant secular Shiite vote in Baghdad and most southern governorates.

    Jason, INM + SLA is what I had on the top of my wish list for a long time, but it seems to me that the Allawi/Maliki personal chemistry is not working in that direction. As you say, it would be the only reasonably ideologically coherent alliance when it comes to basic constitutional issues, and maybe the only set-up that could get an oil law passed, among other things.

  30. Jason said

    It will be interesting to see how much control Allawi and Maliki have over their respective blocks. Hopefully, their listmates have more important concerns than a mere personality squabble at the top.

    You bring up another point. I admit to not fully understanding the mechanics of the parliamentary system (versus the U.S. separation of legislative and executive powers), but I am assuming that legislation (passed by majority vote of parliament) will be necessary for hot-button items like holding a referendum on Kirkuk annexation or a new Shia autonomous region. With Kurd and SIIC power reduced and 60% or more of parliament in the hands of nationalists (I think this includes even Sadr), aren’t those initiatives dead, regardless how many promises Maliki makes while trying to form a govt? Who is going to vote for them?

  31. David Harmis said

    Thanks for your reply Reidar I agree the national vote does not matter for seat allocation outside of compensation and religous minority seats. The national vote total posted was just to show comparative national support.

    The average electoral divider should approach 39,000 if 12 millon votes were cast. (12,000,000 divided by 310). Of course each province will have it’s own divider.

    FYI currently I show INM leading State of Law 92 to 89 including 2 compensation seats for each.

    It is possible that INM will have the larges seat total and be given the first attempt to form a government.

  32. Reidar Visser said

    Jason, of the issues you mention, Kirkuk is likely to be handled by the next constitutional review committee, whereas federalism is governed by local initiatives. The CRC may opt to close the window for future regions through revising the constitution, but as of today it is popular initiatives in the governorates and not Baghdad politicians that control the process. See for example

  33. Kjetil said

    As far as I can see with a little more then 10 % left to count it looks like an dead heat with SoL and INM getting 91 seats each (including compensatory seats). I do not then know who will be given the first right of refusal, but would assume the one getting the most votes is the natural choice.

    This is based on a presumption that in most provinces you either have one clear winner or two more or less even winners. The distribution of the seats “left over” by the electoral divider then is distributed proportionally to the winner or the two front-runners.

    If this is correct, there is only an INA seat in Ninewa that is still in play with INA about 900 votes over the electoral divider – all the other margins after applying the electoral divider is too large for the remaining uncounted votes to change this (of course assuming no significant changes in voting pattern for the remaining votes). Should the INA loose this seat, INM will have 92 and SoL 91 seats.

  34. bb said

    Yes understand about Allawi “List” shia following, but can’t see yet he has made any further inroads into the key 9 shia provinces, just as Maliki was evidently unable to make inroads into the the sunni constituency.

    The “disaster” ( from their pov) the two shia parties have brought on themselves by running separately can be seen in the McClatchy calculation – staying united they would have ticked up 147 seats by now, a comfortable plurality like 05. Furthermore the sadrist “gains” would be little more than a maintenance of their previous position in the COR.

    But PR politics is a great leveller and this case it is satisying to see UIA (and Kurdish) hubris receive its just reward.

    btw – congratulations on your coverage of the election results, the campaign and the de Baath issue – excellent.

  35. Justin said

    I with Jason and Reidar. My realistic nationalist dream team (given who we have available) is Maliki staying on as PM, Hashemi as president, and Allawi as foreign minister, with a suitable Kurd as speaker of parliament. But egos may not allow this unfortunately.

  36. Reidar Visser said

    Justin, those are interesting ideas. If one accepts that Kurdish obstructionism has been the main problem in getting oil legislation passed, it would make sense to opt for an Iraqiyya speaker of parliament instead and maybe continuing with a Kurdish president. Rafi al-Eisawi is an interesting “number two” candidate in Iraqiyya it seems.

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