Institute for Migration & Ethnic Studies

Turkish Parliamentary Elections 2015 in the Netherlands

IMES Report by Maria Kranendonk, Floris Vermeulen en Nermin Aydemir

3 July 2015

The Turkevi Research Centre and the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies (IMES) conducted a survey at the polling station in Rijswijk (consulate Rotterdam) to research the voting behaviour of Turkish voters in the Netherlands. Turkish voters who live abroad could vote in their country of residence during the most recent parliamentary elections in Turkey for the second time.

The first time that these voters could vote in their country of residence was during the presidential elections in August 2014.The most important findings of 2015 are:

  • 64.4 percent of the voters in Rijswijk voted for AKP (Erdogan), 11.4 percent for the HDP (the pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party), 10.4 percent for CHP (Republican People's Party) and 9.9 percent for MHP (Nationalist Movement Party).
  • AKP voters are underrepresented and HDP voters are overrepresented in the study's sample.
  • Women and younger voters (younger than 30 years old) are underrepresented in the sample when comparing their percentages to their numbers in the Turkish population in the Netherlands. Highly educated voters and first generation migrants are overrepresented in the sample when comparing their percentages to their numbers in the Turkish population in the Netherlands. One possible explanation for these numbers is that women, younger Turks, Turks who were born in the Netherlands and lower educated Turks voted less during these parliamentary elections.
  • Highly educated Turkish individuals voted significantly less for the AKP. Voters who were born in the Netherlands voted more for MHP in comparison to voters who were born in Turkey.
  • AKP voters have more trust in Turkish politics and are more interested, and have less trust in Dutch politics in comparison to other voters. Additionally, AKP voters consider that their political ideas are not represented by the Dutch lower house of parliament (Tweede Kamer) and are represented by the Turkish parliament more often in comparison to other voters.
  • Men indicate more often that their political ideas are not represented by the Turkish parliament in comparison to women. Older voters (30 years or older) are more interested in Turkish politics in comparison to younger voters. Additionally, first generation migrants are more interested in Turkish politics in comparison to voters who were born in the Netherlands. Lastly, highly educated voters are less trusting of Turkish politics in comparison to lower educated voters.
  • Men in comparison to women, and older respondents in comparison to younger respondents, indicate more often that their political ideas are not represented by the Dutch lower house of parliament (Tweede Kamer). Voters with Dutch citizenship are more interested in Dutch politics and indicate more often that their political ideas are represented by the Dutch lower house of parliament (Tweede Kamer) in comparison to voters without Dutch citizenship. Higher educated voters have more trust in Dutch politics in comparison to voters who obtained a diploma in lower secondary education (lager voortgezet onderwijs).
  • Turkish voters who have less trust in Turkish politics have significantly more trust in Dutch politics. Turkish voters who have more interest in Turkish politics also have significantly more interest in Dutch politics.

Published by  IMES