Iran's Conservatives Grapple for Power

Mar 1, 2012 | 13:29 GMT

An Iranian woman walks past electoral posters in Tehran on Feb. 27



Iran's parliamentary elections are scheduled for March 2. With most reformist politicians banned from participating, the elections are shaping up to be a competition between Iran's two dominant conservative camps: the populists, led by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and candidates supporting the clerical establishment, led by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Though it is unlikely that even a large win for Ahmadinejad's faction would threaten the nature of the clerical regime in the near term, Ahmadinejad is trying to build a movement that can eventually wrest more control from the clerical elite. This election may indicate whether Ahmadinejad has made progress toward that goal.

Parliamentary elections will be a referendum on populists' taking on the clerical elite's role in Iran. ...

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