Sunday, September 03, 2006

Democracy not going down without a fight in Mexico

Unlike the US, which seems to have simply accepted the gutting of the democratic process with barely a whimper, Mexico's people have not given up the fight for fair democratic elections.

Opposition parties blocked out-going President Vicente Fox from giving his annual speech, calling him a traitor to democracy, while protestors clashed with police in the streets.

Fox's successor, Felipe Calderon, won the election by just 244,000 votes, less than 0.6% of the total, under suspicious circumstances and allegations of fraud.

In a sense, it doesn't matter whether the election was fraudulent or fair; what is encouraging is that Mexicans believe in the democratic process, and unlike Americans who meekly grumble over their morning coffees and then get back to chalking up credit card debt, are prepared to fight for it.

But in fact there is significant evidence of fraud.

ePluribus Media reveals that:

  • ballots have gone missing

  • in one case, officials opened a sealed ballot box only to find it was empty

  • over 130,000 ballots have been obviously altered

  • sixty percent of the recount sites have discrepencies between the official tally sheets and the actual votes

  • and in some precints, the number of votes counted was more than the number of ballots handed out

And this from a recount of a mere 9% of the nations polling stations.

At this stage, we don't know the magnitude or seriousness of some of these errors. It is effectively impossible to count forty-plus million votes without some minor errors, but at this time, evidence for deliberate, significant fraud is looking strong.

Alternet describes more evidence of fraud, including evidence of old-fashioned vote-buying, and points out that there is more publically available evidence for fraud in the Mexican election than there was in the over-turned fraudulant Ukrainian election of 2004.

Other links:
The Nation editorial
Disputed election
Sign On San Diego

I've written about the disputed Mexican election before.

No comments: