Iranians will head to the polls tomorrow to elect a new President. Iran has been a major player in the Middle East for decades and, considering the country’s loose remarks about nuclear energy and existential warfare throughout the past few years, all eyes will be directed on Iran come Election Day. This will also be the first vote for Iranians since the 2009 re-election of current President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

A dismal occasion for Iranian voters, the 2009 election was almost certainly rigged in Ahmadinejad’s favor. However depressing, that election in 2009 did manage to inspire what became known as the Green Movement, comprised of Iranian moderates and liberals, which still seeks to reform Iranian public policy. Unfortunately for those Iranian moderates, liberals, and independents, the slate of candidates that will appear for selection on Election Day are far from reform candidates. If a candidate fails to win more than 50% of the vote on Friday, then a runoff election will occur on June 21.

Academics and diplomats often disagree about Iran’s proper political category amongst the world’s nations. Iran exhibits elements of parliamentary democracy and republican democracy simultaneously, which tends to obfuscate the discussion. In any event, there is a pervasive Islamic presence in Iran’s constitutional structure. For that reason, most scholars concur that Iran ought to be described as a theocratic republic.

The highest-ranking political and religious authority in Iran is actually the Supreme Leader. Ayatollah Khamenei currently holds the position of Supreme Leader in Iran. The President has little influence in Iranian affairs, and must answer to the Supreme Leader. Ahmadinejad’s rule over the past eight years, however, has demonstrated that Iran’s President can still carry great influence on the world stage.

On Election Day, Iranian voters will be left with six candidates for President of Iran. The Guardian Council originally selected eight candidates, but two recent withdrawals from the race have rendered a six-man race. The Guardian Council is a body of six Islamic clerics and six jurists who, between interpreting Iran’s constitution and supervising elections, are also tasked with selecting candidates for the Iranian Presidency.

The Council’s members are conservative, if not reactionary, and sharply influence the election process. After considering more than 680 registrations, the Guardian Council settled on eight men. Regarding the election to come on Friday, the Council used specific guidelines in vetting the candidates. Of the six men on the ballot, each vigorously supports Iran’s controversial nuclear program.

In fact, the Guardian Council only approved candidates who pledged they would continue the nuclear program. This is a strong indication that the West should take the upcoming election very seriously indeed. Without further ado, let’s meet the candidates.

Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf (52 years old) is serving his second term as Tehran’s Mayor. A conservative politician and a former military commander, he ran for President in 2005, eventually losing to Ahmadinejad. Recent reports have indicated that Iran’s Revolutionary Guard might support his current bid for the Presidency. The Revolutionary Guard is a powerful, politically influential branch of Iran’s military.

Ali-Akbar Velayati (68 years old) is a former foreign minister and the current senior adviser on international and diplomatic affairs to the Supreme Leader. He is a conservative who has urged Iran to use diplomacy when dealing with the West. Further, his campaign has heavily focused on ways to improve Iran’s economic woes.

Saeed Jalili (48 years old) is the Secretary of Iran’s National Security Council and Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator. A conservative politician and diplomat, Jalili quietly has the support of Ayatollah Khamenei and possibly the Revolutionary Guard.

Mohsen Rezaei (59 years old) is a former Revolutionary Guard Corps commander and the current Secretary of the Expediency Council. The Expediency Council is a body that intervenes between Iran’s parliament and the Guardian Council, thus carrying much weight throughout Iran. He is a conservative politician promoting industrialization as a means to strengthen the Iranian economy.

Hassan Rouhani (65 years old) is a senior cleric and a member of both the Expediency Council and Assembly of Experts, which appoints or removes the Supreme Leader. Although Rouhani is a conservative, he has also been somewhat critical of Ayatollah Khamenei in recent years. For liberals and moderates in Iran, Rouhani is said to be the best option available.

Mohammad-Gharazi (72 years old) is the only Independent in the race. A non-cleric who only announced his campaign in May of 2013, Gharazi is widely considered to be a pariah in Iranian politics.

No matter who wins the election on Friday, the next Iranian President has serious problems to confront in the following years. The nuclear warfare rhetoric that engulfed Iran’s politics during the past few years has been poisonous for the region. This problem can either be resolved with diplomacy or magnified with hysteria. Meanwhile, Iran’s economy continues to worsen with increased international sanctions. These sanctions have extinguished the hopes of Iran’s lower classes and will only further deteriorate any glance of economic recovery. To put it mildly, the next President of Iran will have a full plate in front of him.