Texas Welcomes International Election Monitors

The Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) has opened a mission to monitor 2012 U.S. elections, the sixth time since 2002 that office has monitored U.S elections. The U.S. participates in the U.N.-based Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), the parent organization of ODIHR, and has, again, invited the mission to assess the election as part of an international commitment to  democratic fairness and transparency.

The Attorney General of Texas, Greg Abbot, with a different take on election transparency, has threatened ODIHR monitors with arrest if they violate state election law, a threat that violates U.S. obligations as an OSCE participant. (I’d like to offer a link, but coverage of the “issue”, if that’s what it is, comes from either the political hard-right or the hard-left and there’s nothing I can recommend — just search for “Texas ODIHR” and choose your poison.)

Abbot might just have hurt feelings over having his voter-suppression — er, voter ID, I mean — law blocked by a U.S. federal court, or he might object to interference with state-wide, systemic voter-suppression plans he and his friends have cooked up. My guess, though, is that he’s just another Texas asshole politician who has forgotten that the United States of America is a nation — Texas exceptionalism riding on top of American exceptionalism.

If you haven’t done anything wrong, there’s nothing to worry about — isn’t that what we hear from the right all the time?

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