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What Conservative Control of Iran's Parliament Foretells

Mar 5, 2020 | 18:06 GMT
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei speaks in Tehran on Feb. 23, 2020.

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei speaks about the country's coronavirus outbreak and parliamentary elections in Tehran on Feb. 23, 2020.

(Iranian Supreme Leader Press Office/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Iran's parliamentary elections on Feb. 21 produced a conservative parliament that will support more hard-line policies against the United States. The new parliament will clash with the more moderate administration of President Hassan Rouhani over how tactically to manage the country's economy through the next and final year of Rouhani's term. But on a strategic level, regardless of the election results, Iran's government across the political spectrum is still aligned on the need to implement austere economic policies to help weather sanctions and to continue an aggressive foreign policy against the United States. The sanctions-burdened economy is negatively affecting the lives of Iranians; how it fares over the next year will determine the kind of conservative candidate -- pragmatist, traditional, hard-line or populist -- likely to win Iran's 2021 presidential election....

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