Hassan Rohani ligger an til å vinne i første valgomgang. Valget har vært et valgskred for Rohani, og de fem konservative kandidatene gjør det elendig.
Budskapet fra velgerne er ikke til å ta feil av, og kan ikke unnlate å gjøre inntrykk på Den øverste leder, Ali Khamenei.
Alle husker hva som skjedde de ledelsen stjal valget i 2009. Bare det at verden har fått vite at Rohani, den eneste kandidaten opposisjonen var villig til å støtte, gjør det så godt så raskt, er et løfte om at man ikke vil forsøke seg på noe tilsvarende.
Mr. Rohani has 51.76% of the estimated 12 million counted votes, with the second runner up, Tehran Mayor Mohammad Bagher Qalibaf, scoring only 15.78%, according to official preliminary results announced by the Interior Ministry.
Mr. Rohani needs 50% plus one vote to win the presidency and if early results are an indication, the election might not go to a runoff as predicted.
Conservative candidates did poorly in vote counts so far, especially the candidates perceived to be the closest to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The current nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, ranked fourth and Ali Akbar Velayati, a former foreign minister, was fifth. Mohsen Rezaei, the former commander of the Revolutionary Guards, who made the economy his top campaign issue, ranked third. The votes for all three men are below 13% so far.
Iran analysts and media pundits say if Mr. Rohani wins with a large margin, it should serve as wake-up call for Mr. Khamenei and his circle of conservative advisers that their hard-line policies ranging from the standoff over the nuclear issue to the dire state of the economy have been rejected by the majority of the population.
«Mr. Khamenei has to understand that his policies have failed. The people came out and voiced their protest in the most civil way and hopefully they will be heard,» said Ali Mazrui, a former parliamentarian and member of the main reformist party, to BBC Persian on Saturday morning.