RE: [change-links] Alarcón proposes observers for Fl orida
- Keep a few things in mind which may change your opinion:
The first thing which has to be done is to demand official
status for the election observers. Recall the United States
has been demanding observer status for outfits like the
Carter Center and the OAS in Venezuela. Recall that the US
is complaining loudly about Cuba's electoral system, which
Washington wants to replace with the one in Florida. For
these reasons, the most important thing we can do is to
shine the light of international publicity on all of this.
Don't give up the fight before it has even begun! Read:
And don't forget the history of fraud and segregation at
the ballot box going back through the years. Read this:
From: mrosario@... [mailto:mrosario@...]
Sent: Saturday, July 31, 2004 3:45 PM
To: firstname.lastname@example.org; CubaNews
Subject: Re: [change-links] Alarcón proposes observers for Florida
What good would it do to "observe in Florida" since hundreds of thousands
are prevented from voting simply because they were convicted once or more
times in their lifetime. Some had their convictions over 30 or 40 years ago.
Yet they can't vote in Florida.
The only thing they will "observe" in Florida is some manipulators taking 40
or 100 absentee ballots of senior citizens and manipulate them.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Walter Lippmann" <walterlx@...>
Havana. July 30, 2004
ELECTIONS IN THE U.S.A.
Alarcón proposes observers for Florida
. "Miami is one hour away from the Carter Center, from the
OAS office, and a couple of hours from the UN
headquarters," the president of the Cuban parliament
informs Granma International . "The least they should do is
to verify the electoral process in a country that prompted
the scandal of the century during the last elections," he
BY JEAN-GUY ALLARD-Special for Granma International-
THE United Nations and the Carter Center, which send so
many observer missions throughout the world, need to send
observers to Florida to verify the electoral process " in
the country that prompted the largest election scandal of
the century during the last elections," affirmed Ricardo
Alarcón de Quesada, president of the Cuban parliament,
speaking to Granma International.
"The U.S. system is diabolical," commented Alarcón, whose
extensive knowledge of the U.S. political world is well
known. "It is designed precisely to make it very difficult
to exercise the right to be registered. It is impossible to
know who is included, who is not included. It's going to be
four years since the last election and the issue of those
on the lists and that whole maneuver by Bush is still being
discussed... He is already preparing the conditions for the
That is why, Alarcón emphasizes, the United Nations should
respond positively to the request by a group of Black
congressmen: "A very simple one. That they send an observer
commission. Moreover, it is a very cheap mission because
the United Nations is in the United States. There's no need
to travel to another country. It's there."
Likewise, the OAS is in Washington, he added, as is the
case with the Carter Center, "which spends its time
traveling around the world, which is based in Atlanta."
"And Atlanta is, I would say, one hour's journey from
Miami. It is very easy. They can go and observe and even go
home to sleep at night. And that they should carry out a
verification process, but starting now. Not just observing
whether there are disturbances or not during the elections.
Begin with the electoral rolls. With the right to be
registered. With the campaign, which is the dirtiest thing
in the world."
EXAMPLES OF BRAZIL AND VENEZUELA
The president of the National Assembly of People's Power
recalled how in Brazil, nobody criticized the last
presidential elections, which Lula won, but which were
organized by his predecessor, with computerized voting
"The organization was excellent, the results were known in
record time, all with machines. But in Brazil, every voter
took away with him or her a little piece of paper
confirming his or her vote. That is in Brazil, which is a
Third World country, and using Brazilian technology."
Alarcón also commented that during the last elections in
Venezuela, nobody said that fraud had been committed.
"Neither during prior ones. Nor in the ones prior to that
one. Nor during the last seven... neither has the
opposition claimed that Chávez had not been elected by the
votes. And now there is a whole maneuver of verification
and control for the August 14 referendum."
"So, a minimum of consequence is needed," he affirmed.
"They should at least verify the electoral process in a
country that prompted the scandal of the century during the
A number of denunciations have been made by individuals and
groups in Florida who are taking steps "because they fear
that they're going to do the same thing again" in a state
where Jeb Bush, the brother of one of the main candidates,
controls the organization of the elections.
"They're the same as during 2000. The National Association
for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and various
groups are calling on Black people to register to vote. The
same thing happened last time. In 2000, there was a large
increase in the number of Black people who took all the
steps to be able to vote and many of them were prevented
from doing so. Afterwards, there were the traps, the
maneuvers to rob them of their votes."
In reference to the use of computerized voting machines,
Alarcón emphasized that in the case of Florida, it is "a
voting system that leaves no trace."
In November, "not even those people with magnifying glasses
will be there, analyzing how the voter wanted to vote.
There will be no written testimony. How is it that this
vote is not going to be controlled internationally when it
is moreover the country that dispatches the most missions
to pass judgement on the quality, decency and integrity of
electoral processes?" he asked.
"AN ABSOLUTE VIOLATION OF A UNIVERSAL PRINCIPAL"
The fact that nearly 600,000 people are deprived of their
voting rights, in Florida alone, for having legal records,
is "an absolute violation of a universal principal,"
"These are not individuals who are serving sentences;
rather, they are people who have already completed their
sentences," he emphasized.
The president of the Cuban parliament commented that in
some southern U.S. states, including Florida, "We're not
just talking about people who have served a prison term in
a penal institution, we're talking about people with a
criminal record. It might mean that someone has violated a
traffic law which has led to him or her spending a night in
jail, or in a police station or paying a fine, but he or
she is marked with a record."
In addition, he said, it should be considered who creates
the lists, who controls them and "who guarantees me that I
have been removed from the lists if I have been erroneously
placed on them."
Alarcón recalled how in the year 2000, the Florida Civil
Rights Commission certified 17,000 Black people who were
prevented from voting, "some because they unduly appeared
on the list, others because they didn't appear on the list
as voters, according to what they were told; others because
they were not allowed to approach the building where the
polls were where, in some cases, armed patrols blocked the
"As Michael Moore says in his documentary, it is very
simple: look at the skin color. Let the white one pass. Not
the Black one. Because the immense majority of Black people
vote against the Republicans."
He then recalled how as a result of the Civil War, when
slavery was abolished, a number of Black senators were
elected, until the Southern states applied such restrictive
regulations that it never happened again - with the sole
exception of the state of Illinois - until the Voting
Rights Act that Johnson passed in 1964.
"With the whole struggle for civil rights, one century
after the Civil War, it was acknowledged that they had a
federal constitutional right, and thus the Southern states
lost the possibility of restricting the vote as they did up
until 1964 - according to income, education, and a whole
series of excuses."
But even so, there continued to be traps, he said, "like it
was during the 2000 election, violence reported by tens of
thousands of people. We're not talking about an allegation,
about what someone said, this is something that everyone
Alarcón recalled the case of Jews from Miami Beach voting
en masse for the only anti-Semitic candidate (Buchanan)
because the ballot was designed to be confusing. "And those
votes led to Gore winning."
"That is why I am proposing a one-hour trip, from Atlanta
to Miami, including President Carter and his experts. And
that they go now!" .
. "What impresses me in the 'transition' plan for Cuba
published by the White House," Alarcón commented, "is when
they speak of the electoral system: the priority, the
central element, is to eliminate the system of automatic,
universal and free registration by which everyone, upon
arriving at voting age, becomes a voter, and instead apply
the U.S. system."
"It seems like a bad joke," he added.
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