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Thailand goes to the polls on May 14, with a cast of leadership hopefuls aiming to unseat Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, right.    © Nikkei montage/Source photos by Reuters and Getty Images
Asia Insight

Thailand election becomes game of economic handouts, nostalgia

Prayuth, Pheu Thai and Move Forward eye escape from middle-income trap

FRANCESCA REGALADO, Nikkei staff writer | Thailand

UDON THANI, Thailand -- In a clearing shaded by rubber trees, Paetongtarn Shinawatra was greeted with applause by hundreds of her family's most ardent supporters -- the farmers of Udon Thani.

Sitting on the grass among them, the 36-year-old prime ministerial hopeful called the province her party's "capital in the northeast" and recalled her self-exiled father, former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, founder of the party now known as Pheu Thai.

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