Thursday, July 13, 2006

"Florida Con Salsa"

In southern New Mexico, Las Cruces is only fifty miles from the Mexican border. Our newspaper usually has a page of Mexican news, and, naturally there is much interest in the recent Mexican presidential election.

Greg Palast, investigative reporter for the BBC, was one of the principal journalists who revealed how the GOP stole the election from Gore and gave it to Bush in the 2000 election --- by making sure Bush got Florida.

Greg calls the fraud involved in the Mexican elections, "Florida Con Salsa".

Felipe Calderon, the conservative-free trader--potential Bush ally---"won" the election by less than one half of one percent of the national vote total of over 41 million.

Here are some reasons why there are those who firmly believe Lopez Obrador, the Populist candidate of the Left won:

• The exits polls showed Obrador winning.
• Obrador was ahead in the votes until the last minute "surge" of districts voting
10-1 and even 100-1 against him came flooding in --just when they needed.
These results were suspicious because these districts' demographics did not anticipate such results.
• The PAN party, the party of Calderon had secured the roll call or list of all eligible voters, their personal characteristics, etc. This "roll call" is not supposed to be in the hands of any political party. And, to have it, and use it as a campaigning tool is
illegal in Mexico.
• Negative or smear campaigns are traditionally refrained from in Mexico. However, Calderon's party engaged in smearing Calderon as a radical who would be a great danger to Mexico.
• ChoicePoint a U.S corporation which engages in gathering data stole a copy of the "roll call" mentioned above. Mexican judges ordered ChoicePoint's operatives to be arrested--but they escaped to the U.S.A.
• The Election Commission in Mexico which has oversight over the elections representatives from all political parties and other branches of government ---
but they chose NO member of the PRD, the party of Obrador, the liberal.
Many believe the 1988 presidential election was also rigged as the leftist opposition candidate held a lead from early returns until the main computer mysteriously "crashed". When it came back up, the ruling party was ahead and went on to win." (from The Scotsman).
• Calderon, the conservative, has amassed an army of 1000 well paid lawyers to counter the charge of fraud and illegality hurled at him by Obrador. The Harvard education Calderon is the preference of a large part of corporate Mexico.
• Obrador's PRD party also points to Vincente Fox, the present Mexican President's, campaigning for Calderon and to business groups taking out TV ads to support Calderon.
Both actions violate Mexico's campaign rules. (Fox and Calderon both belong to PAN.)
• A key former Bush campaign operative was assisting the Calderon campaign. Not illegal, but a sign that Bush very much would like to see Calderon elected -- which for me--is enough to hope he doesn't win.
• Obrador claims there were abuses and irregularities in 50,000 Mexican voting spots. He states he has evidence which he intends to present to the Election Tribunal, a special court, which has the final say in this matter.
Obrador is asking that each box or bag of votes collected by the national government and now in Mexico City--be opened and the paper ballots be counted again. Each bag or box has a tally attached to it. However, does the tally agree with the actual votes?
A fairly small number of these bag/boxes have been opened and the votes counted--and, I believe, in every case, the count was wrong and the corrected tally--favored Obrador.
Another perculiarity: in regions of the country where Obrador is extremely popular---the voters, apparently, voted for state officials--but failed to vote for the President.

IMO---we have in Mexico a Latin replica of the last two fraudulent U.S. elections--in which the man who became President was the one chosen to do the bidding of corporations and the wealthy. Deja Vu.

However, much to Obrador's credit --in striking contrast to Kerry -- he is persistent in claiming fraud and plans to fight to the end to prove---that the people chose himself, not Calderon. Obrador wants all the votes recounted. Certainly, this is possible, and with less than one half of one percent separating the candidates and with considerable evidence of fraud --- it should be done.