Wednesday, July 28, 2004
As voters continue to express concerns about possible problems with November presidential election procedures, members of Congress are asking Secretary of State Colin Powell to make an official request for United Nations election observers, particularly for swing states.
Last week, a group of thirteen Congress members, headed by Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas), sent a letter to Secretary-General of the United Nations Kofi Annan, asking for observers. "As legislators, we should guarantee the American people that our country will not experience another nightmare like the 2000 presidential elections," Congresswoman Johnson said.
The letter also pointed out the "dangers" of paperless, electronic voting machines, saying that they "could become a standard to be exported and emulated [and] should be of concern to the United Nations and the international community as a whole."
The United Nations, however, turned down the request. "The policy and practice is that the United Nations responds to requests made by national governments, and not the legislative branch," said UN spokeswoman Marie Okabe, according to the Trivalley Herald.
Fight Over UN Election Monitors Continues in Congress