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Go Texas!!! Texas warns OSCE officials They will be Arrested!!!!!

robert38-55robert38-55 Posts: 3,621 Senior Member
Critics are outraged that international observers will be watching Americans vote, and Texas even threatened arrests. But the practice isn't new.

BELLEVUE, Wash. -- When Americans think of international election monitors, they’re likely to think of troubled Third World nations. But an outside group is closely watching the 2012 election right here in America, inciting outrage and legal threats.

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott warned the Organization for Security and Co-Operation in Europe, which has been monitoring American elections since 2002, that its monitors might be subject to arrest if they entered Texas polling stations. Daan Everts, an ambassador with the OSCE, told The Associated Press on Friday that his monitors won't go within 100 feet of polling sites as instructed.

Earlier this week, Abbott informed the OSCE that its “representatives are not authorized by Texas law to enter a polling place. It may be a criminal offense for OSCE’s representatives to maintain a presence within 100 feet of a polling place’s entrance.”

Thomas Rymer, spokesman for the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, told MSN News, “This is something we have not run into in the United States before.”

The salvo from Texas brought a swift response from Janez Lenarčič, the director of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights: “The threat of criminal sanctions against OSCE/ODIHR observers is unacceptable.”

He added: “Our observers are required to remain strictly impartial and not to intervene in the voting process in any way. They are in the United States to observe these elections, not to interfere in them.”

The United States is a founding member of the Warsaw-based group, which not only monitors elections for its 56 members, but also promotes human rights, tolerance and non-discrimination, and the rule of law. It’s the group’s sixth U.S. election, and its previous reports are available online.

Some of the strong reactions to the group’s presence this year have arisen from incorrect information. “It’s puzzling that these activist groups that have spent literally millions of dollars fighting reasonable policies like voter ID -- that most Americans support -- would call on a United Nations-affiliated organization to monitor American elections!,” said Catherine Engelbrecht, president of True the Vote, a Texas-based group, in an email.

But the OSCE isn’t affiliated with the United Nations, and the OSCE planned to monitor US elections long before being contacted this year by the NAACP, the ACLU and other groups who claim that conservative groups are trying to suppress minority turnout.

The OSCE says it seeks to be neutral, to observe, report and offer suggestions for improvements – as it does with every nation’s election it monitors. “We meet with a very broad range of civil society groups in order to gain the most comprehensive understanding of the electoral process that we can,” Rymer said. “There isn’t any electoral system that couldn’t be improved in some way. OSCE’s role is to provide assistance in improving electoral processes as it has been mandated to do by all 56 OSCE states.”

Aside from international observers, there will be thousands of homegrown election monitors from across the political spectrum to watch voters cast their ballots. “It sounds to me that if you’re scared of someone observing the elections then you have something to hide,” said Mark A. Smith, a political science professor at the University of Washington. He estimates that about 55 percent of eligible voters will partake in the election process, the same percentage as the 2004 election.

"It is what it is":usa:


  • JayhawkerJayhawker Posts: 18,363 Senior Member
    Better to leave them in a garbage bag on the side of the road than take up valuable jail space and LEO's time...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • robert38-55robert38-55 Posts: 3,621 Senior Member
    Jayhawker wrote: »
    Better to leave them in a garbage bag on the side of the road than take up valuable jail space and LEO's time...

    "It is what it is":usa:
  • snake284-1snake284-1 Posts: 2,500 Senior Member
    That sound like what Texas doesn't need a bunch of European Liberals looking over their shoulder to make sure we're PC. Screw em, we've always been on the UP and UP since LBJ died.

    Actually, the old line Dummycrapic party was what was corrupt in Texas. Since the Republicans have taken over we don't have NEAR the corruption we did in the days of LBJ. I still think they were behind the Kennedy assassination in Dallas, at least partially.
    I'm Just a Radical Right Wing Nutt Job, Trying to Help Save My Country!
  • bullsi1911bullsi1911 Posts: 12,435 Senior Member
    snake284-1 wrote: »
    That sound like what Texas doesn't need a bunch of European Liberals looking over their shoulder to make sure we're PC.

    What they said is- Local law does not allow them to get within 100 feet. If they break the law, they will be arrested.
    To make something simple is a thousand times more difficult than to make something complex.
    -Mikhail Kalashnikov
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