How Many Poles Are There in The Presidential Elections?

The Chairman of National Democratic Union party Vazgen Manukyan considers it unacceptable to speak of the two peaks at the upcoming Presidential elections in Armenia.

According to him, it would only be possible to speak of the two main peaks, if one part of the voters would have intention to vote for Prime-minister Serge Sargsyan, the other part for the Former President Levon Ter-Petrossian. Reality is much different however. “According to data of sociological research, there is a big gap between these two candidates. This is why it is pointless to speak of the two peaks in the electorate’s moods.”

As Vazgen Manukyan has very rightly noted further, you could speak of two peaks/poles, if there was any substantial ideological difference between Serge Sargsyan and Levon Ter-Petrossian, however,   that difference isn’t there, according to the NDU leader.

Interesting thoughts, although quite debatable. This however, led me to a question – how many peaks, or poles are there at the upcoming presidential elections in Armenia anyway? And who do you trust in the end? Let me remind once again, that  according to the PP Chairman Tigran Karapetyan, he is the alternative pole, not Artur Baghdasaryan or Levon Ter-Petrossian. Perhaps we looking at a bunch of Napoleons here, without a single outstanding pole? :)))

Artur Papyan

Journalist, blogger, digital security and media consultant


  1. Firstly, every candidate in every election the world over believes they are the voter’s choice or should be. Otherwise, what’s the point of running.
    However, when it comes to the two peaks that Manukian is talking about, he’s right. There is NO SIGN at all that Ter Petrosian is the most popular opposition candidate.
    Instead, those supportive of Ter Petrosian’s candidacy are saying it is precisely because they hope to influence proceedings so much as to make it happen.
    And it may do, who knows? But then it again, it may not.
    For sure, however, by insisting that this situation exists with no evidence to back that up and more than 10 days away from the pre-election campaign shows just how little democracy exists in Armenia.
    There are polarized poles in terms of people wanting to come to power by any means possible, but on the other counts, Manukian strikes me as being right on the mark.
    Please, everybody, get out of the old way of thinking. Democracy is about making a choice from multiple candidates. It is not — or should not — be about falling into the less than democratic mindset of pitting two polarized poles against the other.
    Of course, if it turns out that Ter Petrosian is the main opposition candidate and has sufficient support behind them, then fine, but for now there is no evidence to back that up. Moreover, I pick up the same situation from speaking to people.
    Sure, it could all change in the pre-election campaign which is why I once again state that for the sake of holding democratic elections or at least evolving democracy in Armenia, wait until then and let voters make an informed choice from all the candidates on offer.
    Forget about this personality-based fight between one side and another — administrative resources against the politics of the street. Campaign, for god’s sake, and let each candidate campaign on a level footing.

  2. Onnik, believe it or not, as of today (Jan 13, 2007), when it is clear that Raffi cannot run for presidency, the truth is that Ter-Petrossian is the #1 candidate for presidency. Believe it or not, but _in Yerevan_ the actual picture is as follows:
    1. LTP – 22%
    2. SS – 17%
    3. Vahan ARFD – 8%
    4. the rest – 8%
    5. have not decided yet – 40%
    So, VM can speak hours long about the hypothetical existence of a third peak or whatever, the reality does not change… at least for the upcoming 30 days his rating will remain around 0.5%. Unfortunately. This is sad, but true.

  3. Thanks for the figures, but…
    What methodology was used for the poll, who conducted it, what questions were asked.
    Incidentally, word I’ve heard is that nationwide Sarkisian is on over 50 percent and Ter Petrosian is at 10-15 percent depending on the poll. Artur Baghdasarian leads Ter Petrosian in the popularity stakes, but Serzh is set for a win.
    This is also what I pick up in conversations with people. Again, I raise the issue of absolute MAXIMUM transparency when it comes to opinion polls, and I point you all to the ComRes poll which reported that Serzh was again the most popular candidate:
    Anyway, because of concerns with methodology and oversight, I have to go with the ComRes and Gallup polls, and not least because this is what I’m also picking up in conversations with people. Also, I think it should be highlighted that you’re part of LTP’s campaign team so that those who don’t know understand that.
    Anyway, I think if you want your results to be taken seriously we need to know everything about the polls. See the following URL ( for information on what is necessary. On the other hand, it is quite possible that LTP is leading Serzh in Yerevan as traditionally, the opposition always does better in the capital than the regions.
    This is another conversation in itself, however, although I once again state that from conversations I’ve had with people at least, few say they will vote for LTP. On the other hand, 22 percent isn’t many for LTP and nor is 17 percent for Serzh. And as I’ve said time and time again on this blog as well as mine, it is those 40 percent who are undecided that will determine everything.
    It’s why REAL and PROPER campaigning is VITAL. The candidate that does that without resorting to cheap attacks on their opponents (which includes LTP as much as it does Vazgen or Kocharian (who does it for Serzh)) might be surprised. Incidentally, that campaigning could also benefit other figures such as Vahan Hovannisian as well, and I say once again, Raffi’s support for a specific could also swing those undecided.
    For now all I can see from the Yerevan poll is that if it’s reliable that there is no clear leader and there’s everything to play for. Nationally, however, I believe the results that put Serzh firmly in the lead with Levon behind other candidates. Again, though, that can all change in a properly conducted campaign, but again, that doesn’t necessarily mean it will favor Serzh or Levon.
    It will favor the most convincing and dedicated campaigning candidate with something to offer voters. Let’s see.

  4. I guess you meant 13 January 2008. All I can say is thank god blogs automatically put the date on posts or else I’d still be writing 2007 as well 😉

  5. […] in the comments section of a post on The Armenian Observer, Aramazd Ghalamkaryan provides details of a Yerevan-based opinion poll which shows the first […]

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