Malaysia's Ruling Coalition Wins 13th Straight Vote

80% turnout amid strong opposition push

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted May 5, 2013 10:30 AM CDT | Updated May 5, 2013 12:49 PM CDT

(Newser) – Malaysia's long-governing coalition has won national elections to extend its 56 years of unbroken rule, fending off the strongest opposition it has ever faced. The Election Commission reported that Prime Minister Najib Razak's National Front coalition captured 112 of Malaysia's 222 parliamentary seats to win a simple majority today. Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim's three-party alliance seized 57 seats. Other races were too close to call.

It was the National Front's 13th consecutive victory in general elections since independence from Britain in 1957. It faced its most unified challenge ever from an opposition that hoped to capitalize on allegations of arrogance, abuse of public funds, and racial discrimination against the government. The Election Commission estimated more than 10 million voted for a record turnout of 80% of 13 million registered voters.

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim votes with his wife Wan Azizah at a polling station at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysian's go to the polls Sundy in what could be the toughest test of the ruling coalition's 56-year grip on power in Southeast...
Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim votes with his wife Wan Azizah at a polling station at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysian's go to the polls Sundy in...   (Mark Baker)
Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim and his wife Wan Azizah are surrounded by media after voting at a polling station at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysians have begun voting in emotionally charged national elections that could see the long-ruling coalition ousted after nearly...
Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim and his wife Wan Azizah are surrounded by media after voting at a polling station at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysians...   (Mark Baker)
Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim and wife Wan Azizah talk after voting at a polling station at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013.
Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim and wife Wan Azizah talk after voting at a polling station at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013.   (Mark Baker)
Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim greets supporters with his wife Wan Azizah, left, after voting at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysians have begun voting in emotionally charged national elections that could see the long-ruling coalition ousted after nearly 56 years in power.
Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim greets supporters with his wife Wan Azizah, left, after voting at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysians have begun voting...   (Mark Baker)
Voters wait outside a polling station at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysians have begun voting in emotionally charged national elections that could see the long-ruling coalition ousted after nearly 56 years in power.
Voters wait outside a polling station at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysians have begun voting in emotionally charged national elections that could see the long-ruling...   (Mark Baker)
A woman waits to vote at a polling station at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysians have begun voting in emotionally charged national elections that could see the long-ruling coalition ousted after nearly 56 years in power.
A woman waits to vote at a polling station at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysians have begun voting in emotionally charged national elections that could see the...   (Mark Baker)
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak shows his finger marked with indelible ink after casting his ballot in the general elections at a polling station in Pekan, Pahang state, Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013.  Malaysians have begun voting in emotionally charged national elections that could see the long-ruling coalition ousted after...
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak shows his finger marked with indelible ink after casting his ballot in the general elections at a polling station in Pekan, Pahang state, Malaysia, Sunday, May 5,...   (Lai Seng Sin)
Malaysian voters wait in a line to cast their ballots in the general elections at a polling station in Pekan, Pahang state, Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysians have begun voting in emotionally charged national elections that could see the long-ruling coalition ousted after nearly 56 years in power.
Malaysian voters wait in a line to cast their ballots in the general elections at a polling station in Pekan, Pahang state, Malaysia, Sunday, May 5, 2013. Malaysians have begun voting in emotionally charged...   (Lai Seng Sin)
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