North America

Articles about voting issues in North America outside the United States.

Canada: Elections Canada wants to buy social media ‘listening’ tool to track threats ahead of 2019 election | Globalnews.ca

Twitter, Reddit, Facebook. All three have been accused over the last two years of letting themselves be used by Russian attempts to influence the 2016 American election and as a new procurement posting suggests, they are just a few of the social media sites Elections Canada wants to keep an even closer eye on as it tracks risks and trends ahead of the 2019 Canadian election. To do that, the elections agency plans to buy what it calls a “social media and open source data listening and analytics tool.” In a notice of proposed procurement posted on Tuesday morning, the elections agency writes that it needs the new tool to be able to “listen, in near real time, to key influencers to identify potential issues that may affect the election early on,” as well as to “detect, through timely and accurate notifications, potential incidents and trends affecting the integrity of Canadian electoral events in near real time.” Read More

Canada: Federal government to go on retreat to beef up bill to prevent foreign interference in elections | Calgary Herald

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his newly shuffled cabinet will focus squarely on next year’s election at a two-day retreat this week — including a hard look at the very laws governing elections. Last spring the government introduced Bill C-76, aimed at preventing foreign interference in elections and regulating third-party advocacy groups, as well as undoing a number of controversial measures passed by the previous Conservative government. But insiders say the Liberals now want to beef up the bill, which was being studied by the procedure and House affairs committee when Parliament broke for the summer. Among other things, the government wants to do more to ensure foreign actors or money aren’t involved in elections, require more transparency for political messaging on social media and prevent political parties from setting up ostensible advocacy groups to support them and help skirt spending limits. Read More

Nicaragua: Ortega nixes early election as crisis solution | Associated Press

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega is rejecting calls for early elections as a solution to a political crisis in which more than 250 people have been killed amid a heavy-handed crackdown on protests. Ortega said late Saturday that the Central American country’s constitution sets the rules and they “cannot be changed overnight.” He said protesters who are demanding he leave office are “coup mongers” and said they should “seek the vote of the people” if they want to govern. Read More

Mexico: Authorities mulling $10 million fine for election victors | Reuters

Mexican President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s party could face a $10 million fine for violations of campaign finance rules, the national electoral institute said on Wednesday following the group’s wide-reaching election victory. Lopez Obrador, a former Mexico City mayor who has vowed to root out corruption and make government contracts transparent, on Sunday won by a landslide while his leftist National Regeneration Movement (MORENA) took an outright majority in Congress. The possible fine of more than 197 million pesos, slated to be put to a vote by the National Electoral Institute (INE) on July 18, would be the largest related to campaign financing for the recently concluded election season. Read More

Mexico: Puebla suffers rash of ballot burglaries, one dead | The Mast

Only hours before the polls closed in Mexico’s highly contentious general elections, the city of Puebla suffered a rash of ballot robberies at polling stations, leaving one person killed and voters unable to make their selection for president, the state governor, and congressional representatives. The Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) confirmed that one of their local chairpeople in the state of Puebla, Fernando Herrera Silva, was also assassinated on Sunday. In a statement, the PRI said, “We demand the state and judicial authorities to clarify this attack, which also recorded three other people injured. This process is marred again by acts of violence and it is the duty of the state government to guarantee the safety of citizens, in the free exercise of their rights.” Read More

Mexico: Historic landslide victory for leftist Amlo | The Guardian

A baseball-loving left-wing nationalist who has vowed to crack down on corruption, rein in Mexico’s war on drugs and rule for the poor has been elected president of Latin America’s second-largest economy. Andrés Manuel López Obrador, a silver-haired 64-year-old who is best known as Amlo and counts Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn among his friends, was elected with at least 53% of the vote, according to a quick count by Mexico’s electoral commission. López Obrador’s closest rival, Ricardo Anaya from the National Action party (PAN), received around 22% while José Antonio Meade, a career civil servant running for the Institutional Revolutionary party, or PRI, which ruled Mexico for most of last century, came in third with around 16%. Read More

Mexico: 133 politicians murdered ahead of Mexico elections | AFP

A total of 133 politicians have been murdered in the run-up to Mexico’s elections on Sunday (Jul 1), the consulting firm Etellekt said, as the violence gripping the country exploded into politics on a record scale. The murders – mostly of local-level politicians, the most frequent targets for Mexico’s powerful drug cartels – were recorded between September, when candidate registration opened, and the close of campaigning on Wednesday, when an interim mayor was killed in the western state of Michoacan. The victims included 48 candidates running for office – 28 who were killed during the primary campaigns and 20 during the general election campaign, Etellekt, which carried out a study of election-related violence, told AFP Thursday. Read More

Mexico: Cyberattacks in Mexico Raise Alarm Bells Ahead of Sunday’s Election | Bloomberg

Cyber attacks against Mexican financial institutions and reports of alleged election interference around the world are fueling concerns among analysts that the nation’s presidential vote on Sunday may become a target for hackers. While Mexicans will cast their vote July 1 by paper ballot, electronic systems will be used to tally and transmit the results, which the electoral authorities will then release to trusted media outlets. The slightest disruption to the voting process can sow doubt and distrust, said Ron Bushar, vice president of government solutions for cybersecurity services company Mandiant. Tensions are already high in the country given that polls show Mexicans are likely to elect a leftist for the first time in almost five decades. That candidate, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, has accused his rivals of fraud and collusion to keep him from winning in the past two presidential elections, while his opponents say that his presidency would be a disaster for Mexico’s economy. Such polarization is fertile ground for cyber criminals. Read More

Mexico: Court Disqualifies 15 Election Candidates Who Pretended to be Trans to Meet Gender Quota | teleSUR

Mexico’s electoral court has decided to disqualify 15 local government candidates, who were pretending to traditional Muxes in Oaxaca, after ruling their attempted to use gender fluid characters to qualify under a gender quota rule amounted to fraud. “In order to avoid a fraud against the principle of gender parity, the court has decided to annul 15 of the 17 candidacies to the council in several municipalities of Oaxaca,” the court announced through an official statement. The ruling was issued after Muxe, Mexico’s third gender, organizations in Oaxaca reported that 17 male candidates from the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), the National Action Party (PAN), Citizen Movement, New Alliance, and the Democratic Revolutionary parties were pretending to be Muxes to meet a gender quota. Read More

Mexico: More Mayoral Candidates Murdered Days Before Elections | teleSUR

Yet another Mexican candidate was murdered on early Thursday morning, just days ahead of the July 1 general elections, bringing the total number of politicians killed since September 2017 to 121. Fernando Angeles Juarez, the mayoral candidate for the Democratic Revolution Party in Ocampo, was gunned down leaving his hotel Posada del Bosque in the state of Michoacan. Angeles died at the scene and no suspects have yet been identified. His death brings the number of politicians murdered since September 2017 to 121, making this the most violent electoral season in Mexico’s history. Hours before, Omar Gomez Lucatero, an independent candidate for mayor of Aguililla in Michoacan, was murdered Wednesday night next to the local cemetery, close to a military barracks. Read More