Iran’s new president consolidates hardline grip as reformers pushed aside

The victory by Raisi also showed the determination of Iran’s conservative establishment, including its security and intelligence agencies, to eliminate any political challenge at a critical moment, analysts said.

Among the potential landmark moments ahead: reckoning with who would succeed the 82-year-old supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who is seen as a mentor to Raisi.

Some experts speculated about whether the return to unity at the top — Khamenei’s ruling clerics and the political structure around Raisi — could become a permanent fixture in Iran and the country’s relatively vibrant election contests could be a thing of the past. For Friday’s election, most moderates were barred by the ruling establishment, leaving many voters frustrated and turnout apparently low.