Request for United Nations Election Assistance
United Nations Electoral Assistance Division
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As one of the most historic and defining presidential elections in United States history looms, our country is still in the shadow of the series of questionable events that determined the eventual outcome of the 2000 presidential election. Though voting in the U.S. has had a history of irregularity, ample evidence has continued to surface since the millennial election that not only are voting systems inconsistent and often inconclusive, but that discriminatory voter disenfranchisement, particularly on the basis of race, is not only widespread in this country, but systematic. Instances ranging from voter purging, intimidation at the polls, and deceptive practices around voter eligibility are well documented. The Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice and its Voting Section have gone through a striking politicization that has severely hampered the ability of these authorities to successfully guard against such civil rights violations: since taking office, the current administration has shifted the Sections traditional enforcement priority away from the protection of minority voters.
Despite efforts on the part of citizens, civil rights organizations, and even Congressional committees to call attention to these ongoing problems, little has been done on an institutional level to address concerns and make sure that this democracy of many is not determined by the abuses of power by a few. It is for this reason that we feel the need to reach out to the community of the United Nations and ask for oversight or at least a public expression of concern from the most respected international organization in existence.
We are well aware that given the United Nations commitment to focusing their assistance efforts on countries that have had neither the historical commitment nor the financial resources to develop processes of democratic self-definition, a request for election oversight in the United States might seem problematic. However, we believe that it is crucial to express to the global community that within this country there are not only hundreds of thousands, but millions of citizens that are afraid of their government, particularly the executive branch, and do not have any confidence that a fair election is forthcoming. After claiming control of the executive office under questionable circumstances, this is a government that has, among other things, begun a war under false pretenses, detained and tortured citizens of other nations, and suspended many of the constitutional rights of its own citizens.
Given the financial, military, and cultural power the United States continues to wield, we hope you will understand that this letter is an urgent request for the international body of the United Nations to recognize that it cannot afford to assume that the democratic process in the United States is unfolding as it should be.