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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Texas Attorney General Threatens to Arrest International Election Observers

Posted by on Thu, Oct 25, 2012 at 6:36 AM

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott has sent a letter to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) warning that its election observers are not welcome in Texas:

The OSCE’s 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. Failure to comply with these requirements could subject the OSCE’s representatives to criminal prosecution for violating state law.

My first thought was: My god, what an asshole! My second thought was: What does Texas have to hide?


Comments (13) RSS

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Cato the Younger Younger 2
The only question I had was what are they hiding. Since it's Texas I always assume everyone there is an asshole.
Posted by Cato the Younger Younger on October 25, 2012 at 6:56 AM · Report this
I read the letter. Aside from a lot of partisan boilerplate (they even got ACORN in there, how cute) he doesn't say what law these election observers would be breaking. The whole thing is a lot of "We don't like your kind around these parts." What's left unsaid is that they can probably look forward to a runin with one of Texas's plentiful supply of assholes, the law having little or nothing to do with it.
Posted by Prettybetsy on October 25, 2012 at 7:12 AM · Report this
Matt from Denver 4
I think this is just a lot of hot air. I don't believe there are any major close races in Texas, which is the primary motive for voter suppression tactics. I could be wrong, but I think their gerrymandering has pretty well put the need to cockblock the vote to bed.

However, it may be intended as a rallying call for teabaggers to get out there and muck things up the best they can, and turn out and vote themselves. They hate the UN, after all, and maybe they didn't know that the UN was planning to do this. (I didn't until this morning.)
Posted by Matt from Denver on October 25, 2012 at 7:38 AM · Report this
Catalina Vel-DuRay 5
I love it when the troll tries to be butch. It's so cute!
Posted by Catalina Vel-DuRay on October 25, 2012 at 7:39 AM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 6
They should go and let themselves be arrested. Let Texas show the entire world what a bunch of morons run the state.
Posted by Pope Peabrain on October 25, 2012 at 8:04 AM · Report this
As an American who has volunteered on five OSCE missions in the former Soviet republics, I can tell you that the Texas AG doesn't know what the fuck he's talking about.

OSCE observers do not "influence or interfere with the election process." They are observers who fill out reports on what they see - not referees or umpires who jump in and make a ruling on whether or not something is being done correctly.

Even if people are openly stuffing a ballot box, the OSCE regulations instruct their observers to simply mark that fact on their report forms. They can't even step in and say "by the way, you're not supposed to do that" - let alone stop them from doing it.

This isn't about Texas not wanting outsiders to "influence or interfere with the election process" - it's about Texas not wanting unbiased outsiders to see what a sham the democratic process is down there.
Posted by SuperSteve on October 25, 2012 at 8:19 AM · Report this
Joe Szilagyi 9
If it's a legitimate voter fraud, the electoral body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.
Posted by Joe Szilagyi on October 25, 2012 at 8:28 AM · Report this

I hope the OSCE sends observers anyways. Let's see what Texas is going to do then. Bullies.
Posted by Patricia Kayden on October 25, 2012 at 8:47 AM · Report this

Rangers don't have jurisdiction in Washington State; that's why they're called TEXAS Rangers, get it?

Posted by COMTE on October 25, 2012 at 9:27 AM · Report this
@11: Not to mention there's a slight difference between the rights of a private citizen and whatever "rights" a supposedly free and open election system might have. Of course, the troll's brain is probably unable to grasp such a concept.
Posted by MRM on October 25, 2012 at 9:56 AM · Report this
venomlash 13
@7: Thanks!
@9: Well played, sir. Scholar, gentleman, etc. etc.
Posted by venomlash on October 25, 2012 at 10:05 AM · Report this
YakHerder 14
International agreements trump state laws. Here's the agreement in question, to which the U.S. is a party. The relevant languate is at section I(8).…
Posted by YakHerder on October 25, 2012 at 10:11 AM · Report this
Will in Seattle 15
What to hide?

Well, to start with, Texas is actually a blue state that was gerrymandered to appear to be a red state.

And then a whole bunch of poor black folks came from New Orleans after the flood, which made it even bluer.

So, what could they possibly be hiding?
Posted by Will in Seattle on October 25, 2012 at 11:52 AM · Report this

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