UAE: Federal NationalNational Election Commission launches roadshows | WAM

In the run-up to the forthcoming elections to the Federal National Council (FNC), the National Election Commission will flag off a series of roadshows to enlighten the UAE community on the election process and its importance.

Nearly 130,000 citizens, both men and women from all the seven emirates in the UAE, are supposed to cast their votes to elect half of the members to the country’s national assembly.

The Voting News Daily: 6 fake Democrats fall, setting stage for GOP recalls in Wisconsin, Cherokee Nation Orders Second Recount In Chief Election

Wisconsin: 6 fake Democrats fall, setting stage for GOP recalls | JSOnline Six fake Democratic candidates put up by the Republican Party to buy time for Republican state senators subject to recalls accomplished that job Tuesday, but none of them did the unexpected and knocked off a real Democrat. Candidates backed by the Democratic Party…

Wisconsin: 6 fake Democrats fall, setting stage for GOP recalls | JSOnline

Six fake Democratic candidates put up by the Republican Party to buy time for Republican state senators subject to recalls accomplished that job Tuesday, but none of them did the unexpected and knocked off a real Democrat.

Candidates backed by the Democratic Party won all six Senate primary elections, all but one of them by substantial amounts. They’ll all go on to face the Republican incumbents on Aug. 9, in an attempt by Democrats to regain control of the state Senate and put the brakes on Gov. Scott Walker’s agenda. That the primaries were held at all is a function of the twists and turns of political strategy played out in recent months as the state broke into warring camps over Walker’s attempt to restrict collective bargaining for public employees.

The Republican Party forced the primaries to give its six senators facing recall another four weeks before facing a Democratic challenger, in order to allow them to take their case to the voters and argue that their work on the budget was good for the state.

Oklahoma: Cherokee Nation Orders Second Recount In Chief Election |

The Cherokee Nation Supreme Court ordered another recount Tuesday in the election for Principal Chief. The second recount will be done by hand and will start at 8:30 a.m. this Saturday, July 16, 2011.

The race has been the center of controversy since the election on June 25, 2011. Chief Chad Smith was initially declared the winner by just seven votes over challenger Bill John Baker. Baker ordered a recount and was declared the winner by 266 votes last week.

But over the weekend, the Cherokee Nation Supreme Court counted absentee ballots. Their count showed more than 200 of those ballots were not included in the recount that reversed the election results.

California: Vote-suppression complaints filed in testy congressional election |

As voters headed to the polls Tuesday to decide a hard-fought special congressional election in the South Bay area, attorneys for Democrat Janice Hahn filed complaints alleging that supporters of her opponent, Republican Craig Huey, were trying to suppress turnout of her voters.

In a letter sent Tuesday to the Los Angeles County district attorney, the U.S. attorney in Los Angeles and the California attorney general, Hahn lawyers Stephen J. Kaufman and Steven J. Reyes asked for immediate investigations into “voter suppression actitivies” in the 36th Congressional District race.

The attorneys said several voters reported receiving telephone calls Monday night telling them the election had been postponed to Wednesday at Hahn’s request ,and others were given wrong polling place addresses.

California: CA-36: Robocalls telling voters the election is moved to Wednesday? |

This was inevitable: An early complaint of voter suppression in California’s special House election. Janice Hahn’s campaign has filed a complaint with the state Attorney General to investigate “several reports” of calls to voters that Tuesday’s election had been moved to Wednesday.

According to Hahn’s attorney, other voters received calls including “incorrect polling information.”

One voter received a call Monday morning saying, “Called to let you know that the election has been moved to Wednesday, per Janice Hahn’s request.  Thanks, bye.”

Wisconsin: New voter ID rule leaves some absentee voters without ballot | Leader-Telegram

At least a few area voters have been confused by a new rule governing absentee voting. Yvonne and George Nelson of Menomonie planned to cast absentee ballots for the 10th Senate District recall primary Monday before taking a trip out of town.

But they were politely told at the Dunn County Courthouse that they couldn’t vote absentee because under the new voter ID law, they needed to vote by Friday. Before the new law had been passed, the deadline was the day before the election.

“I’m furious,” said Yvonne Nelson, who had been unaware of the change. “I feel disenfranchised. We either have to drive a couple hundred miles to come back to town or not vote. “My husband said he’s not driving back 200 miles at $4 a gallon.”

Wisconsin: Waukesha County clerk Nickolaus plans to use more secure ballot bags | JSOnline

After poorly sealed and torn ballot bags became one source of concern during the recent Supreme Court recount, Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus plans to introduce new, more secure bags.

She said the bags are made of tougher plastic and are comparable to bags used by banks, with an adhesive tape closing that would reveal signs of tampering. Ballots from individual polling places are bagged after they’re counted on election night and stored either at municipal halls or with the county clerk until results are final and uncontested.

Wisconsin: Glendale voters head to Milwaukee in recall primary mixup | JSOnline

About 20 Glendale voters tried to cast recall primary ballots Tuesday at Milwaukee City Hall, a Milwaukee election official said.

The mixup apparently was part of the confusion triggered by the North Shore suburb’s decision to consolidate all of its polling places at Glendale City Hall for Tuesday’s Democratic primary. State Rep. Sandy Pasch (D-Whitefish Bay) is facing Gladys Huber, a Republican running as a Democrat, for the right to challenge Sen. Alberta Darling (R-River Hills) in the Aug. 9 recall election.

Arizona: Brewer calls Nov. 8 recall election for Pearce | Arizona Republic

Barring a legal challenge, Senate President Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, will face recall election on Nov. 8.

Pearce, one of the state’s most powerful and controversial politicians, released a statement late Tuesday afternoon saying that he told Gov. Jan Brewer that he was in support of her calling the election this fall. It is believed to be the first recall election of a state legislator in Arizona history.

Pearce made it clear in his statement that he has no intention of resigning his office, as some of his detractors have suggested.

Malaysia: Poll activists call for royal commission | Straits Times

Malaysian activists who staged a mass rally for poll reforms called on Tuesday for a royal probe into the electoral system after the clampdown on their weekend protest.

Bersih 2.0, a coalition of non-governmental organisations, said it would not abandon its campaign, with Prime Minister Najib Razak widely expected to call elections by early next year. The opposition say voting favours the Barisan Nasional coalition, who have ruled Malaysia for half a century but saw their majority slashed in the previous general election, in 2008.

Malaysia: Malaysia government fights criticism after rally chaos | The Brunei Times

Malaysian authorities sought yesterday to deflect criticism that the government was suppressing dissent after making mass arrests and unleashing tear gas against at least 20,000 demonstrators who marched for electoral reforms.

The political fallout from rare scenes of mayhem in Kuala Lumpur is certain to complicate efforts by Prime Minister Najib Razak’s ruling coalition to bolster its support ahead of general elections that many expect to be held within a year.

International rights groups and Malaysian opposition parties denounced the government’s response to the country’s largest political rally in four years, which resulted in the arrest of 1,667 people Saturday. All were freed without immediate charges by yesterday. Amnesty International called it “the worst campaign of repression we’ve seen in (Malaysia) for years,” while Human Rights Watch said it was “a maelstrom of the Malaysian authorities’ own making.”

Thailand: Prime Minister-in-waiting confident she will be cleared | Channel NewsAsia

Thai prime minister-in-waiting Yingluck Shinawatra said on Wednesday that she was confident that alleged campaign irregularities which are holding up her appointment would be dismissed.

Thailand’s Election Commission on Tuesday put off a decision on whether to approve Yingluck and 141 other candidates, including outgoing premier Abhisit Vejjajiva, as members of the 500-seat lower house.

“There’s still time left under the law. I think the EC is trying to finish its investigation,” she said. “I hope and am confident that the EC will treat me and my Puea Thai Party with fairness and justice.”

Thailand: Yingluck yet to be endorsed by Thai election commission for fraud complaints |

The Election Commission (EC) of Thailand on Tuesday verified the election result of 358 members of the parliament, or 71.6 percent of the total 500 MPs, but decided not to verify the incoming prime minister (PM) Yingluck Shinawatra and the outgoing PM Abhisit Vejjajiva.

Both Yingluck and Abhisit are facing complaints filed in connection with electoral frauds and EC needs to investigate. Among 358, 249 are from constituency-based system and 109 from party-list.

Some key “Red-shirt” leaders — Jatuporn Prompan, Nutthawut Saikua and Weng Tojirakarn, who are also on Pheu Thai Party’s list, are not yet endorsed by the agency as they also have complaints regarding their qualification.

Editorials: The right to vote | The Manila Times

The right to vote is more technically called “suffrage.” It was first found in the US Constitution in 1787 ( The Philippine Constitution provides: “Suffrage may be exercised by all citizens of the Philippines, not otherwise disqualified by law, who are at least eighteen years of age, and who shall have resided in the Philippines for at least one year and in the place wherein they propose to vote, for at least six months immediately preceding the election. No literacy, property, or other substantive requirement shall be imposed on the exercise of suffrage.”

Clearly, it is not obligatory to exercise suffrage. It is due to this permissive provision of the Constitution that failure to cast one’s vote without justifiable excuse (an election offense under Section 261, sub-paragraph 1 of the Omnibus Election Code) is said to have been decriminalized. Under such 1978 penal provision, suffrage was more an obligation than a right.

Editorials: Defending direct elections | The Jakarta Post

The political reform movement that began in 1998 has significantly transformed the democratic atmosphere in Indonesia through amendments to the 1945 Constitution. One of the fundamental changes relates to the electoral mechanism for regional leaders.

We used to have indirect elections where governors, mayors and regents were chosen by members of local legislative councils. A year after the enactment of the 2004 Law on Regional Administration, regional leaders were elected directly through a “one man, one vote” mechanism.

Bangladesh: Chief Election Commissioner frustrated over Dhaka City Corporation election delay | The Daily Star

Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Dr ATM Shamsul Huda yesterday expressed his frustration over the government’s dilly-dallying approach on holding the long overdue Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) poll.

“Government’s attitude indicates that they have no headache to hold the election,” he said during a dialogue with Islami Andolan Bangladesh (IAB) on electoral reform at the commission’s secretariat in the city.

The last DCC election was held in early 2002 and its tenure expired on May 14, 2007. Election Commission (EC) already approached the government three times to hold the election but there was no satisfactory response, he said.

Bahrain: Talks focus on voting rights for new Bahraini citizens | Gulf Daily News

Foreigners granted Bahraini citizenship being allowed to vote in elections 10 years after they get nationality was debated at the National Dialogue last night. Participants also discussed the possibility of every Bahraini getting an increase of BD100 to their salaries to improve their standard of living as well as implementing a study on how to improve their income.

In another session, participants stressed the need to further boost Bahrain as an investment hub to strengthen the economy and deal with budget deficit. Participants also raised a suggestion to establish centres dedicated to raising awareness on human rights in Bahrain, said Dialogue spokesman Isa Abdulrahman at a Press conference at the Isa Cultural Centre, Juffair.

“Participants raised many proposals during the sessions, some of which were debated or needed more time to be discussed,” he said. More than 280 delegates took part in the sessions last night.

New Zealand: Maori overseas MP could address inequity | Waatea 603

A Victoria University political scientist says there could be a case for an MP representing Maori living in Australia. Maria Bargh says 110,000 Maori live across the Tasman, but they tend not to vote in either country.

She says one of the reasons she’s doing a survey of their political behaviour is to generate some debate on how those people can be represented.

Arizona: Architect of Arizona “Papers Please” Immigration Law to Face Recall Election | AllGov

Arizona Senate President Russell Pearce, sponsor of the nation’s most controversial anti-immigration law, has become the first legislator in his state’s history to face a recall election.

Pearce was the author of SB 1070, Arizona’s law requiring law enforcement to pull over any motorist suspected of being an illegal immigrant and demand proof of legal residency or citizenship. It was signed into law in April 2010 by Governor Jan Brewer.

The Voting News Daily: Wisconsin recall primaries: Real vs. ‘fake’ Democrats will cost taxpayers more than $475,000, New Jersey judge wants expert witness, voting machine docs in Fairfield case

Wisconsin: Wisconsin recall votes: Real vs. ‘fake’ Dems — will cost taxpayers more than $475,000 | Wisconsin’s divisive law ending most public-sector collective bargaining set in motion the biggest lawmaker-recall vote in state history, officials said. Nine recall elections — beginning Tuesday with primaries in six state Senate districts — is “nothing like anyone…

Wisconsin: Recall Primaries: Real vs. ‘fake’ Democrats will cost taxpayers more than $475,000 |

Wisconsin’s divisive law ending most public-sector collective bargaining set in motion the biggest lawmaker-recall vote in state history, officials said.

Nine recall elections — beginning Tuesday with primaries in six state Senate districts — is “nothing like anyone in Wisconsin or, for that matter, the nation, has seen,” state Government Accountability Board spokesman Reid Magney told The Wall Street Journal.

And unlike in most states, Democratic challengers to six targeted Republican lawmakers are opposed by six Republicans running as Democrats — under Wisconsin’s open-primary system, which lets anyone of any party run in any primary.

Oklahoma: Chief: Cherokee election recount ‘fatally flawed’ | AP/RealClearPolitics

The leader of one of the nation’s largest American Indian tribes said Monday that the latest count of votes cast in its hotly contested election for chief shows that about 300 votes were left out during a recount.

The count ordered by the Cherokee Supreme Court and done Sunday night by the Cherokee Nation’s election commission “confirms the recount was fatally flawed,” Chief Chad Smith said at a news conference Monday.

Unofficial results from the June 25 election showed councilman Bill John Baker unseated Smith by 11 votes. But when the Cherokee Election Commission announced the official results on June 27, Smith was declared the winner of a fourth term by seven votes.

Oklahoma: Inventory of votes discovers ballots missing during recount |

After an inventory of absentee ballots from last month’s Cherokee Nation principal chief election, members of Chief Chad Smith’s camp say officials found some inconsistencies.

In last month’s election, longtime councilmember Bill John Baker was originally unofficially deemed the next principal chief, winning by 11 votes; however, the next day the election commission officially certified the results, which named Smith the election winner by seven votes. After a recount, the title was given back to Baker, naming him the winner by 266 votes.

Smith sought help from the Cherokee Nation Supreme Court to appeal the recount.  The court ordered an inventory of absentee ballots and envelopes over the weekend.

Wisconsin: Fake Democrats run in Wisconsin primaries for recall elections |

Primary elections in six Wisconsin Senate races Tuesday pitted fake Democrats against candidates supported by the party, with the winners advancing to take on Republican incumbents targeted for recall.

The state Republican Party orchestrated the placement of the fake Democrats on the ballot, thereby delaying the general election until Aug. 9 and giving the incumbents an additional month to campaign.

Tuesday’s primaries marked the first of four elections over the next five weeks related to the targeting of nine senators for recall based on their actions related to Gov. Scott Walker’s proposal taking away collective bargaining rights from most public employees. The Republicans voted for it and the Democrats fled to Illinois for three weeks to delay a vote.

Wisconsin: St. Croix County Republicans urge vote for ‘fake’ Democrat | JSOnline

The St. Croix County Republican Party has launched an 11th-hour effort to mobilize voters to support a “fake” Democrat in the 10th Senate District primary election on Tuesday.

Jesse Garza, chairman of the county party, sent out an email Sunday urging voters who support Sen. Sheila Harsdorf (R-River Falls), who faces a recall election Aug. 9, to vote Tuesday for Isaac Weix of Menomonie. He’s one of six fake or protest candidates put up by the Republican Party to force Democratic primaries in six districts where Republican state senators face recall elections.

Weix faces Shelly Moore, a teacher and state teachers union official from River Falls, in Tuesday’s Democratic primary election. “We have the opportunity, and we might as well use it,” Garza said in a phone interview Sunday.

Wisconsin: Voter ID Phased in as Wisconsin Recall Elections Begin | WUWM

Tuesday’s recall primaries will be the first elections held since state Republicans passed a law requiring voters to present photo identification. But you do not have to show an ID card at the polls yet.

“The Legislature decided they wanted what you could call a ‘soft implementation.’ Photo ID is such a big change, and we don’t want to surprise anyone and have anyone be kept from voting when they don’t know about it,” says Reid Magney, spokesman for the state Government Accountability Board. It oversees elections.

South Carolina: Opponents ask feds to block South Carolina’s voter ID law |

Opponents to South Carolina’s new photo-ID-to-vote law revved up their efforts Monday to have it declared illegal. The Rev. Jesse Jackson and several members of the Greenville Rainbow PUSH Coalition held a news conference to blast the law, which requires residents to bring a photo ID, such as a valid S.C. driver’s license, to the polls to cast a ballot.

Jackson called the measure an effort to suppress voter turnout, according to the Greenville News, adding he has sent a letter to the U.S. Justice Department and is meeting with members of Congress on the issue.

Rhode Island: Some liberals, Democrats stunned by passage of Rhode Island voter ID | The Providence Journal

When a voter ID bill passed in Rhode Island last week, longtime opponents were stunned. How could this happen in one of the country’s most Democratic and liberal states? Why did Democratic leaders and black legislators support it? And why did Governor Chafee sign it?

Some say black politicians were trying to protect themselves from Hispanics’ growing political power — two longtime black legislators were defeated by Hispanics in the 2010 elections. Some cite illegal immigration as a driving force. Some say voter ID is simply essential.

Whatever the reason, people are still seething a week later. That includes many within the minority community, who chide Chafee for saying he was compelled by concerns from the “minority community” about voter fraud.

Arkansas: East Arkansas holds special election for House seat | NewsTimes

Voters head to the polls in east Arkansas in a special election for a House seat vacated by a former Harlem Globetrotter.

Voters were expected to cast their ballots Tuesday to choose a new representative in state House district 54 to replace former Rep. Fred Smith. The Democratic lawmaker resigned from his Crittenden County seat in January after he was convicted of felony theft.