1991 Turkish general election

General elections were held in Turkey on 20 October 1991, to elect members to the 19th Grand National Assembly. It was the first by the ruling Motherland Party to be contested without its founding leader, Turgut Özal, who had become Turkish president two years previously. The result was a swing against Özal's former party in favour of its fierce centre-right rival, the True Path Party led by Süleyman Demirel. The vote saw two additional parties cross the 10 percent barrier to enter parliament. Necmettin Erbakan and his Welfare Party saw a party of religious background returned for the first time in 14 years. Welfare had a greatly increased share of the vote and took several key provinces, including Istanbul in 1994 local elections. Bülent Ecevit's Democratic Left Party also scraped through to win seven seats. Voter turnout was 83.9%.[1]

1991 Turkish general election

← 1987 20 October 1991 1995 →

450 seats in the Grand National Assembly
226 seats needed for a majority
Turnout83.92% (Decrease9.36pp)
  First party Second party Third party
  Suleyman Demirel 1998.jpg Mesut Yilmaz as Turkish Prime Minister.jpg 3x4.svg
Leader Süleyman Demirel Mesut Yılmaz Erdal İnönü
Leader since 6 September 1987 15 June 1991 30 May 1986
Leader's seat Isparta Rize İzmir
Last election 19.14%, 59 seats 36.31%, 292 seats 24.74%, 99 seats
Seats won 178 115 88
Seat change Increase119 Decrease177 Decrease11
Popular vote 6,600,726 5,862,623 5,066,571
Percentage 27.03% 24.01% 20.75%
Swing Increase7.89pp Decrease12.30pp Decrease3.99pp

  Fourth party Fifth party
  Necmettin Erbakan.jpg Bülent Ecevit-Davos 2000 cropped.jpg
Leader Necmettin Erbakan Bülent Ecevit
Party Welfare DSP
Leader since 11 October 1987 15 January 1989
Leader's seat Konya Zonguldak
Last election 7.16%, 0 seats 8.53%, 0 seats
Seats won 62 7
Seat change Increase62 Increase7
Popular vote 4,121,355 2,624,301
Percentage 16.88% 10.75%
Swing Increase9.72pp Increase2.22pp

1991 Türkiye Milletvekili Genel Seçimleri.png

Prime Minister before election

Mesut Yılmaz

Elected Prime Minister

Süleyman Demirel


An electoral alliance called the "holy alliance" was formed by the Welfare Party, Nationalist Task Party and Reformist Democracy Party to contest the elections.[2]


True Path Party6,600,72627.03178+119
Motherland Party5,862,62324.01115–177
Social Democratic Populist Party5,066,57120.7588–11
Welfare Party4,121,35516.8862+62
Democratic Left Party2,624,30110.757+7
Socialist Party108,3690.440New
Valid votes24,416,66697.06
Invalid/blank votes740,4232.94
Total votes25,157,089100.00
Registered voters/turnout29,979,12383.92
Source: Nohlen et al.


  1. ^ Dieter Nohlen, Florian Grotz & Christof Hartmann (2001) Elections in Asia: A data handbook, Volume I, p258 ISBN 0-19-924958-X
  2. ^ Akgun, Birol (March 2002). "Twins or Enemies: Comparing Nationalist and Islamist Traditions in Turkish Politics" (PDF). Middle East Review of International Affairs. 6 (1).