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Iran is due to hold presidential elections on June 28 that were precipitated by the death in May in a helicopter crash of former President Ebrahim Raisi. Although real power is held by the country's supreme leader, presidents can make a difference in the daily lives of Iranians and even in foreign policy should the supreme leader agree. The candidacy of a Western-friendly heart surgeon with popular appeal is giving hope that positive changes might be in store.

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Vali Nasr