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Are there United Nations standards for auditing elections?

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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 09:13 AM
Original message
Are there United Nations standards for auditing elections?
Seems to me there's more likelihood of having meaningful standards come out of the UN than there is of real reform coming out of our current One Party Congress/Administration.
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Jersey Devil Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 09:15 AM
Response to Original message
1. Suggestion - maybe try writing Pres Carter?
He has monitored so many of them that I bet he has written guides that he might be willing to share. Does he have some kind of foundation for that? I thought I read that he did.
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BlueEyedSon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 09:29 AM
Response to Original message
2. Carter Center Expert Q&A: The 2004 U.S. Elections
Edited on Sat Jan-08-05 09:29 AM by BlueEyedSon
Expert Q&A: The 2004 U.S. Elections
28 Oct 2004

CONSIDERING U.S. ELECTIONS IN THE CONTEXT OF INTERNATIONAL ELECTION STANDARDS

A Q&A with Dr. David Carroll, interim director of the Democracy Program, and Dr. Jennifer McCoy, director of the Americas Program

Good link, implications that the US electoral system would not meet the Carter Center's guidelines for fair and democratic elections: http://www.cartercenter.org/doc1866.htm
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Jersey Devil Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 09:40 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. Nice find
I tried looking it up after posting above but couldn't find it.

I have to work on my Googling!
:-)
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BlueEyedSon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 09:43 AM
Response to Reply #3
5. There were a lot of good finds, maybe too many
:)

I used "election monitoring" "election standards" "carter center" etc.....
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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 09:42 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. Thanks. Perhaps some of our effort should go toward adding...
Edited on Sat Jan-08-05 09:44 AM by Junkdrawer
voting machine auditing standards to the "emerging international standards". The short interview you cited shows the Carter Center wants a paper trail, but there was nothing about auditing that paper trail.

BTW: The Carter Center will not audit US elections because:

Dr. Carroll: The Carter Center's mission is focused abroad. We organize formal election observation missions outside the United States when welcomed by all the major parties in an election. Although the Center is a nonpartisan organization, President Carter's affiliation with the Democratic Party could be perceived as detracting from our ability to be impartial in the United States.
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BlueEyedSon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 09:44 AM
Response to Reply #4
6. Which is total BS because of his funding, open standards and
transparency. Anyway, the whole REST of the US electoral process is partisan-ised!
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harmonyguy Donating Member (589 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 02:03 PM
Response to Original message
7. The standards actually rest with OSCE - link here
The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, of which the US is a participating state, and to which the US has made certain committments, is the organization which provides election monitoring in the US and elsewhere.

This link is to a report entitled
Existing Commitments for Democratic Elections in OSCE Participating States, a Progress Report
http://www.osce.org/documents/odihr/2003/10/772_en.pdf

Read the report and then underline all the committments that have not been met.

There's a lot of progress yet to be made by the world's 'greatest' democracy.

HG
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BlueEyedSon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 02:12 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. Thanks
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rumpel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 02:39 PM
Response to Original message
9. US ratified International laws
while this is link is a repost of a previous post:

Treaty Law - Which Is United States Federal Law - Sets Election Standards

As noted above, if there is indeed litigation relating to the November 2 election, international law could play a role - as could international monitors. Several treaties are directly applicable.

First, there is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) - which was drafted in large part by the United States under the guidance of Eleanor Roosevelt, and adopted by the U.N. in 1948. Article 21(3) of the UDHR provides that "the will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government; this will shall be expressed in periodic and genuine elections which shall be by universal and equal suffrage and shall be held by secret vote or by equivalent free voting procedures."

Second, there is the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD), which the U.S. has signed and ratified. In its Article 5, the ICERD similarly provides that countries will undertake to provide the right to participate in elections--to vote and to stand for election-on the basis of "universal and equal suffrage," without distinction as to "race, colour, or national or ethnic origin."

Third, there is the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which the U.S. has signed and ratified. Article 25 of the ICCPR provides that every citizen shall have the right to vote and be elected at "genuine" periodic elections, which shall be by universal and equal suffrage, without "unreasonable restrictions."

What does this language mean, specifically? In a 1996 memorandum analyzing the ICCPR, the U.N. Committee on Human Rights offered further clarification. It found that "states must take effective measures to ensure that all persons entitled to vote are able to exercise that right." It added that any "abusive interference" with registration or voting, as well as coercion of voters, should be prohibited by penal laws, and those laws should be strictly enforced. Finally, it made clear that there should be "independent scrutiny of the voting and counting process so electors have confidence in the security of the ballot and the counting of the votes."

article by Noah Leavitt, Esq
http://writ.news.findlaw.com/leavitt/20041021.html
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nancyharris Donating Member (637 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 03:07 PM
Response to Original message
10. Ha!
Considering that the majority of nations belonging to the UN do NOT hold democratic elections, I would suspect that the UN does not have any elections standards.
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