Thai PM frontrunner heads into home stretch

Thai PM frontrunner heads into home stretch
Cartoon by Kuad for BenarNews

Now comes the hard part. 

Pita Limjaroenrat, the 42-year-old leader of the opposition Move Forward Party, is the prime ministerial frontrunner as Thailand’s new parliament convenes to vote for a new PM this week. 

His party won big in the May 14 general election, but Pita and Move Forward face a steep final push as they try to clinch the magic 376 via the vote on July 13. That’s the number of parliamentary seats needed to form the next ruling coalition, after more than nine years of rule by an administration with deep military ties. 

To secure the top office – and as stipulated in new electoral rules enshrined in the 2017 military-drafted constitution – Pita will need support from the upper house Senate. It is stacked with pro-royalist senators appointed by the junta, many of whom oppose his plans to amend a draconian law against defaming the monarchy.


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