'Now comes the hard part': Weighing in on the Thai election results

'Now comes the hard part': Weighing in on the Thai election results

CNNGo’s local contributors and Thai Twitter users react to election results and share impressions of Thailand's historic day
Yingluck Shinawatra
Thailand's next prime minister, Yingluck Shinawatra, greets the media before giving a victory speech at Pheu Thai Party headquarters on July 3.

With Yingluck Shinawatra set to become Thailand's first female prime minister, millions of Thais are celebrating the historic election results.

According to unofficial poll numbers, her Pheu Thai party won a majority of parliamentary seats in the nation's general elections on Sunday.

Despite this, the country is as divided as ever, given that Yingluck is the younger sister of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a 2006 military coup.

Thai Twitter users and CNNGo’s Bangkok contributors react to the results and share their 2011 election experiences.

Hoping for collective strength

Yingluck supportersSupporters of Yingluck Shinawatra cheer after hearing the results of early exit polls. “The good news is that the process was peaceful with very little controversy and that all parties have accepted the outcome.

"The bad news is now comes the hard part where we wait and see how everything settles down and if we can move forward together or fall apart separately.

"Johann Von Goethe once said, 'In all things it is better to hope than despair.' Well now is the time we have to hope, and hope hard that we as a people are collectively stronger than the weaknesses and greed of individuals. Long live the people."

-- Cod Satrusayang,CNNGo contributor

"All English gentleman with an admirable Thai spirit = former PM Abisit."

-- Twitter user Drstit

Accept the results

“I found it was very difficult to try to get a cab on the weekend and when I finally got one, the driver explained to me that most of his friends went back to their hometowns for voting.

"By the time I arrived at my voting station, 80 percent of the names on the list were filled. People were very active, more than ever, which is good to see.

"It was no surprise that Pheu Thai won. But I think some people are overreacting to the results.Many comments give the impression the white collars want to fall back to a dictatorship, where only the opinion of the influential matters.

"This is depressing. I believe we need to accept what the majority says as that's what democracy is about."

-- Saransri Prawatpattanakul,CNNGo contributor

"Stop saying accepting the people's verdict. Yes, we've already accepted it. Can't you see? We're already exercising our right to oppose."

-- Twitter user Thelastagitator

"What this election has shown is that Thais are sick of the political deterioration of recent years, of the meddling of re-politicized institutions that are not supposed to be politicized.

"What is important now is where the new government puts its priorities first and how it handles the many problems the country is facing.

"Ultimately, will the will of the people be heard? Because, as a young Thai said to me outside a polling station: "This is the last chance for democracy, if ‘they’ don’t accept it –- that’s it!"

-- Saksith Saiyasombut,CNNGo contributor

Excitement and skepticism

Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva Incumbent Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva addresses supporters and concedes defeat in the country's general election at his party headquarters in Bangkok.“I was at some polling stations and at Pheu Thai headquarters on voting day, and the excitement -- especially in the latter -- was infectious. Everyone seemed a little cautious, but the occasion still felt momentous.

"Personally, though, I'm skeptical about a) whether Pheu Thai will really bring about change and b) whether the new Pheu Thai government will be stable.”

-- Maher Sattar,CNNGo contributor

"They don't talk about how to make people fly with their own wings. They promise to feed Thai with materialism. Poor supporters."

-- Twitter user ChiraChiras

“My election day was pretty normal -- after a decade here I'm pretty cognizant of the fact that even if I go out canvassing or promoting or spend hours and hours blogging and discussing, my actions as a foreigner will have exactly the same effect as someone who relaxes at home playing video games and drinking beer -- so that's what I did.

"Unfortunately, over the past few years Thailand has gotten really good at holding elections but has done a pretty poor job of abiding by the results.

"I think the outcome was pretty clear even as far back as a few weeks ago; hopefully this time -- the fourth straight win by a Thaksin-associated party -- they'll realize that this is how democracy works and let the voice of the people decide the direction of the country.”

-- Greg Jorgensen,CNNGo contributor

"Nobody knows the result of the election in Thailand is good or not for the people. Now we just have to wait for the result of the election."

-- Twitter user Kwantouch

The nation has spoken -- but not everyone wants to listen

Thailand electionsSupporters of incumbent Thai prime minister and candidate for the ruling Democrat Party Abhisit Vejjajiva react to news of his defeat.

"With Pheu Thai party’s big win, the majority of Thai people have spoken their minds. Those who felt they had been deprived of a voice in governance have got it back democratically.

"The rest of the country should accept the result with the same grace that outgoing Prime Minister Abhisit did.

"And now that Yingluck has been given the mandate, she must use it well and keep her poll promises. Hopefully, with the election results, the intense pressure will be taken off society."

-- Gavin Nazareth,CNNGo contributor

"In my opinion, 'Yingluck' has no personality, charisma, or even her own brain."

-- Twitter user JuneArtsy

"My election experience was a lack of taxis and very bad traffic due to the number of people who exercised their right to vote. While I'm not a major fan of the Democrats, I would have preferred to see them win rather than Thaksin's proxy.

"That being said, the results are in and the best thing for all parties concerned is to respect the outcome and give Yingluck and the Pheu Thai the chance to prove themselves.

"All my Thai in-laws, at least those who live in Bangkok, voted for the Democrats. They were all disheartened by the election results, but at the same time the women in the family were genuinely excited by the fact that Thailand has its first female prime minister.

"Let's hope that Yingluck makes her unique position in Thai political history count for something good."

-- Greg Lowe,CNNGo contributor

A predictable outcome

"Even though I was following the election closely through Thai media and daily interactions with my friends and family in Thailand, this election never had me on the edge of my seat; things seem to have been predictable since the beginning.

"I wasn't at all surprised by the outcome. The people had made it clear what they want, and at this point it's futile to speculate whether they really know what they're getting.

"The real white knuckle -- what I'm truly anxious to see -- is where this government will take us. I'm hoping for the best."

-- CNNGo contributor Leela Punyaratabandhu, U.S. resident

For the latest news on the Thailand election, visit CNN.com. Do you have your own Thailand election experience you'd like to share? Tell us about it in the box below.

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