Opinion: Fun With Stereotypes, Thai Election Edition

Re•tention: Pravit RojanaphrukWhat kind of people vote for which parties, and why? These are important questions that conventional wisdom may fail to fully answer, but still offers a rough take on our political situation.

Phalang Pracharat Party

Big fans of junta leader Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha will almost automatically vote for the party which nominated him as its prime ministerial candidate.

They love “peace and order” no matter the cost or means of obtaining it.

Many soldiers will likely vote for the party as well. What’s more, anyone who hates and fears the return through proxies of ousted and fugitive former premier Thaksin Shinawatra will most likely see Phalang Pracharat Party as the most feasible party to prevent pro-Thaksin camps from making a comeback March 24.

People who prefer to be on the likely winning side will likely vote for the party – so will the 250 senate members, mostly selected the junta, help return Prayuth to Government House.

In the end, Prayuth is a known quantity though he will have much less power as he won’t be a junta leader after the election.

Action Coalition for Thailand Party (ACT)

If you love Suthep Thaugsuban, then this is the party for you.

If you see red when you hear the word Shinawatra, then you can’t go wrong with the party, except that Phalang Pracharat Party will likely be a more sensible bet.

If you are a die-hard ultra-royalist and want to sacrifice yourself in defense of the monarchy, then ACT is for you, as no other party can rival Action Coalition for Thailand’s extreme pro-monarchy rhetoric.

Pheu Thai Party

Die-hard fans of Thaksin will most likely continue to vote for the party, no matter what others say about him. The party is also most likely to win more seats than any other anti-junta party.

Rural poor who swear by the benefits of Thaksinomics will likely continue to bet on the party which reliable when it comes to economic policies, minus its mismanagement of the rice-pledging program of Yingluck Shinawatra’s government.

Future Forward Party

If you are against the junta but is disillusioned with Thaksinism, then this new party is likely for you.

If you are hip and young, or think you are hip and young, then Future Forward is likely for you.

Artsy people and those who pretend to be artsy will like its indie vibe, although being a successful political party requires it reach mass appeal, which then could hardly remain indie.

Commoner Party

This is the true indie and progressive party. Voters may know they are throwing away their vote for a party that may not even manage to win a single MP seat. But they may believe the party leaders who say voting for the party is a long-term political investment.

The Commoner Party is for idealists and NGO workers who won’t settle for less even if it means having no MP representing them.

Democrat Party

The kingdom’s political party has a strong political machinery and dominates Bangkok for years also caught between pro-versus-anti-junta political forces, it has somewhat lost its traction.

Big fans of leaders Abhisit Vejjajiva will sure to continue for vote for him although the party seems lost amidst much more extreme political polarization.

Bhumjaithai Party

A typical old-style, medium-size party where patron-and-client politics rule supreme – but with a twist. If you love your MPs to never fail to attend your wedding or funeral, Bhumjaithai is for you. In a bid to upgrade the party for a new generation, it’s gone all in on policy platforms such as legalizing recreational use of marijuana, ride-share service Grab and hosting platform Airbnb.