Ghalibaf is viewed warily by some of Iran’s political conservatives and clerical rulers, who view him as being more focused on pragmatism than revolutionary ideals. But there are few signs that he would make bold diplomatic shifts or decisions about Iran’s nuclear program if elected.On Saturday, on a state-run television network directed at Iranians abroad, Ghalibaf said: “The president alone cannot decide foreign policy, as it is the sum of systemwide [decisions]. Our supreme leader and other branches have a say in this. So foreign policy does not change much with the change of president.”As the only candidate with real executive experience and demonstrable accountability to the public, Ghalibaf, 51, is making a strong case that he has what it takes to be the Islamic Republic’s chief executive. Working in his favor are a solid military background and a highly praised record as mayor of Iran’s sprawling capital of more than 12 million people.
June 10, 2013 at 6:00 AM EDT