Egypt enters electoral mode
I am pessimistic about Egypt's forthcoming elections, mostly because I don't think they have been seriously prepared for, notably in comparison to Tunisia's. In an op-ed that should come out today or tomorrow (it's now out), I will explain why exactly. Ideally, the elections should be postponed and a civilian authority take over immediately, but that's not in the cards. So the best scenario forward is for these elections — despite them being already flawed — go forward and the new parliament unite around a platform of greater civilian oversight of the transition and to get SCAF out of power as soon as possible, most probably through the election of a president.
Al-Masri al-Youm today ran a bunch of stories on the contenders:
- Brotherhood contests over 50 percent of parliamentary seats
- Egyptian Bloc ready for elections after several splits
- Adl Party: Steering away from electoral coalitions
- The Revolution Continues Coalition hits the ground running
Major other blocs/parties should be the Salafists, al-Wafd, and NDP offshoots.
In the meantime, more worrying signs:
- Posters back Egypt's military ruler for president
- Coalition launches campaign supporting Tantawi for president
I don't think this necessarily means anything — at least not yet. It reminds me of the campaign for Omar Suleiman last year.