Preceded by: Mihemet Shara
Birth name: Yaqûb Goran
Born: 11 February, 1947 (age 71)
Halab, Halab Canton, Kihdis
Political Party: Republican Party of Kihdis
Education: University of Erdlina (Ph.D. in Political Science)
Yaqûb Goran is the 20th President of the Federation of Kihdis. He was born to two native Kihdite parents on 11 Februaru, 1947 in the huge commercial city of Erdlina, just as the Cold War was beginning. His household was a strictly conservative one, where he learned much about past Kihdite philosophers and leaders. The Goran family, however, was hardly religious, and so Yaqûb was never brought into any faith. He explored Shia Islam due to its large presence, but was convinced by his mother to remain agnostic.
He worked inside of his father's clothing mill in Erdlina from the age of 10 until he finished schooling and opted to go to college at age 19. During his childhood, the massive electoral reforms of the 1950s were constantly in the news, as were debates about the various emerging ideologies of the world. His decision to become a politician was sparked by the record openness of the media during his youth.
He was accepted into the University of Erdlina at age 20, in 1967, and passed with full honors, graduating in 1971 with his Bachelor's Degree in Political Science. He ran for his first office out of his aging parents' basement in 1974, and was elected in a great upset to the Erdlina city council. His first Party membership was of the now-defunct Erdlina Wolves, a third-positionist Party local to the Canton. He would remain in that seat until 1982, when he resigned due to a drugs scandal (which was later found to be libel). During the 1980s, Goran worked several low-paying jobs around the city, all while attempting to run for a higher level seat: the Federal Assembly.
Yaqûb's break came in the election season of 1994, where Erdlina's fifth district Assemblyman was impeached. Seizing the opportunity, he ran under the new Republican banner, using his experience in lower class society as a central point in his campaign. He was regarded as a populist by the opposition, but still pulled through with 53% of the vote. The 1990s saw the rise of the Republican Party, as they would steal close to 100 seats during the decade in the Federal Assembly and become a federally recognised party.
Goran held the seat from 1995 until he resigned in 2014 to fully focus on his presidential campaign. He ran on a similar Kihdis-First, populist platform and carried the vote, winning the election with 57% of the vote. During his presidency, he has been lauded by various organisations for his active policies in the Syrian Civil War and protection of refugees, but has faced criticism for his fiery anti-Turkish rhetoric. The increasingly nationalistic nature of his speeches have been concerning to some Republican Party members, but have only served to boost support among the population.
Goran's presidency has seen the expansion of LGBT rights in the nation, as well as greater spending on welfare for Kihdite citizens. He has also been instrumental in a security plan along the Syrian-Kihdite and Syrian-Iraqi borders, where the Federation has de facto seized control of the areas to prevent the flow of terrorists, and to regulate the flow of refugees. Goran has also been involved in popular discussions to reintegrate the City-State of Antakiya to the country, which have been largely successful.
He has also used his executive abilities to disallow any political parties with explicit religious policies from entering the Federal Assembly. This decision was made in June of 2016, only a few months into his term, after the infamous Qewmsh bombings perpetrated by an Islamist/Turkish Ultranationalist group active in the north.
A Republican-submitted bill to extend the presidential term length to five years, instead of the original three, was approved by Goran in August of 2018. The Assembly voted 402 - 279 - 2 to approve this constitutional amendment, far surpassing the 50 + 1% required. This move was seen as an informal vote of confidence for the Republican Party, as the public's response was mostly positive. The extension also expanded to Assemblymen, moving their term length from three to five years as well.
Goran has seen fierce criticism from his LDPK opposition, and from conservative religious organizations as well. The LDP has come out against the President on several occasions for his expansions in spending, including the 2016 Welfare Expansion Act and the ongoing military involvement in Syria, which has cost the nation billions of dollars since it begun in 2015.
Conservative Muslim and Christian groups in Kihdis have unanimously decried his expansion of legal protections for LGBT citizens, claiming that their rights of free practice have been infringed. Religious organizations have also heavily disapproved of Goran's executive restrictions on religiously based political parties. Additionally, despite his personal appearance as a staunch Kihdite nationalist, other groups in parliament, including the isolationist wing of his own party, have accused him of bringing in unwanted western influence to the culture.
The decision to expand the presidential and parliamentary term lengths to five years has been decried as an abuse of power. Goran has seen accusations of "strong-manning" the nation since his inauguration in 2015.
Pro and Anti
For: Republicanism, Pragmatism, Mixed-market economy, Kihdite nationalism, Immigration, Secularism, Federalism, Interventionism, United States of America, One State Solution
Against: Islamism, Ba'athism, Laissez-Faire economics, Neoliberalism, Marxism-Leninism, Corruption