Thaksin allies in Thai election landslide: exit polls
by Daniel Rook
BANGKOK, July 3, 2011 (AFP) - Opposition allies of Thai fugitive ex-leader Thaksin Shinawatra scored a landslide election win, exit polls showed Sunday, marking a stunning comeback after years of turmoil sparked by a military coup.
The poll was the first major electoral test for the elite-backed government since mass protests by Thaksin's "Red Shirt" supporters last year paralysed Bangkok and unleashed the worst political violence in decades.
Thaksin's Puea Thai Party is set to win 313 seats out of 500, against 152 for Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva's Democrats, according to a projection by Suan Dusit University. Other exit polls painted a similar picture. . .
. . .Toppled by the military in 2006 and now living in self-imposed exile in Dubai to avoid a jail term for corruption, Thaksin nevertheless dominated the election, after tapping his youngest sister to run in his place.You can hear an English language interview, sent by a friend in Thailand, with Yingluck Shinawatra below.
Yingluck Shinawatra, a telegenic businesswoman who is now set to become Thailand's first ever female prime minister, is a 44-year-old political novice described by Thaksin as his "clone".
What does this mean? Hard for me to tell, but the educated Bangkok elite were trounced by the rural voters and working class. The NGO I volunteered with in Chiangmai were not red shirts and I'm sure they are unhappy with this turn of events.