Election Fraud

Iranian Presidential Election Anomalies, 2005-2009

 Iran's 2005 and 2009 Presidential Election:  Curious Results

Michael Collins

Linked to "Give Me Liberty..."  Iranian People Demand Democracy June 23, 2009  &
Iranian Election Fraud 2009: Who Was the Real Target... and Why?  June 15, 2009

(also see Chatham House's detailed analysis of election fraud in Iran)

This analysis began on after the publication of the June 15th article and was
appended to the "Give Me
Liberty..." article on June 22.  It is ongoing.

Iran's presidential elections have had anywhere from three to ten candidates from 1989 forward.  These candidates must be assessed and approved to run by the Guardian Council.  Candidates for the Majlis (Iran's unicameral legislature) go through the same process.  There is a general election for president with all of the approved candidates.  if there's no majority winner, a runoff is held between the top two candidates.  The runoff occurs within days of the first election.  From 1989 forward, the 2005 presidential race was the only time that a runoff was necessary. 

The following chart shows Reformist versus Conservative vote totals since 1989.  The leading candidates and allied parties are grouped under one of those headings.  2005 data is presented for both the initial and run off elections below due the switch from Reformist to Conservative dominance.  This raises questions considered in the second section of this ongoing analysis.

Election Data: Wikipedia  1989   1993  1997   2001   2,005   2,009  &  IranTracker Data

*Note the flat totals for "Eligible Voters" from 2005 to 2009.  This is a phenomena that needs to explained.

There has been a clear record of Reformist victories since 1989.   1997 and 2001 provides the best view of relative Reformist strength.  Ayatollah Khatami had a clear platform that gave the people a choice between a more open society and the isolation of the Conservatives.

But the two time winner Khatami couldn't run again.  This left the Reformist movement without leadership.  Also, in 2004 the Guardian Council decimated Reformist legislative candidates. This was accomplished under the  radical right wing religious faction doing the bidding of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.  Eliminating Reformist in this obvious fashion is called "silent coup"  of 2004  

 In 2005, Rafsanjani stepped in to fill the void for the Reformists.  While he lacked the appeal of the politically skilled Khatami, Rafsanjani is a major figure from the Islamic Revolution and had a personal fortune at his disposal. 

From 1989 through 2001, there were four match ups of conservative versus reformist elements.  The reformists won each of those with growing margins and significant increases in voter turnout.  Khatami, a true reformer, was the most effective vote getter in the history of the Islamic Republic.  His margins are the basis for claiming that Iran is dominated  by reformists. The 2005 election even showed strength for reformists.  Many boycotted that election but their numbers were significant. 

How do you get from the history of Iranian elections to a 2009 conservative win for president?  You don't unless you disappear the dreadful economic situation, the international isolation, and the anger of the under 30 segment of the population.  It's not conceivable that voters ignored the disastrous management of the economy and regional and international isolation.

  Anomalies in Iran's 2005 Presidential Election: Curious Results

Simply looking at the final results for 2005 leads me to see this as the exception in the Reformist majorities.  The first election on June 17, 2005 showed a 16.6 million to 11.5 million Reformist win. Ahmadinejad won the June 24, 2005 runoff election over Rafsanjani by 17.3 million to 10.0 million votes.   In the course of seven days, Reformists went from a 2 to 1 advantage to a 2 to 1 disadvantage.

2004 saw the move against Reformist candidates for the Majlis, the legislative body, and the 2005 presidential election saw a sudden switch from a two to one advantage for Reformists in the first round of presidential balloting to a two to one advantage for Conservatives without any intervening variables to explain the change.

What's wrong with this picture?  What event caused 5.6 million reformist votes
to switch to the hardliner Conservative Ahmadinejad in just seven days?


The 2005 election is of interest due to the boycott of many reformists.  In the first round of voting the race was close between the leading individual candidates, Ahmadinejad and Rafsanjani.  But if you take the June 17th data and add up Conservative and Reformist votes by the the individual candidate's allegiance to Reformist or Conservative, you have an outcome in which Reformists out poll Conservatives by 56.6% to 39%. 

That is significant since the June 24th outcome was 61% Conservative to 39% for Reformists.  The Conservative win required that a significant number of Reformists defect to Ahmadinejad.  Why would they do that?  They'd ignored the other boycotting reformists.  They had a strong enough resolve to vote to avoid the boycott of their fellow reformists.  It's safe to assume that this was to fight a conservative win.  Why would they defect to Ahmadinejad.  Was the 2005 presidential race a rigged election?

Also see:  Iranian Election Fraud 2009: Who Was the Real Target... and Why?  June 15, 2009 

Data Sources:  Iran Tracker and Wikipedia Iran Presidential election 1989 through 2009.

Chart of 2005 with allied candidates





Mexican 2009 Election Winner Is . . . the Party of Abstention

This is the 2nd post in a 3-part series on the national election in Mexico July 5 2009

Michael Collins

The boycott of the election by registered voters will gain a clear plurality, around 48%, and possibly a majority, of registered voters.

The 2009 Mexican boycott includes those who deliberately nullified their ballots and those who simply chose not to vote.  Early reports indicate that 8% are actively nullifying their vote (voto nulo) and that another 40% of registered voters are not showing up at all.  That combined figure, 48% or so, will handily beat the vote totals for the ruling PAN Party and the former rulers, the PRI, without out any doubt.  While totals will change, there is no way that PAN and PRI can overcome the anulistas and those who stayed away from the polls.

Los Anulistas

Los Anulistas, vote boycotters

Abstentions in Mexican mid term elections for the 500 member Chamber of Deputies have grown from 32% in 1991 to 42% in 1997.  In the most recent election for the Chamber in 2003 58% of citizens chose to avoid the polls (Mexidata).  There is an argument, I suppose, that the formal boycott was the voto nulo movement, defacing ballots that would be counted as such.  But that argument fails when we consider that there's a long term trend by those able to vote who simply boycott elections in Mexico and elsewhere.

Mexico's voters experienced what many believe to be a stolen election in 2006.  That experience plus widespread disillusionment with the performance of government gave rise to the voto nulo movement.

The prediction that "boycott" would win could have been made at most any time prior to the election without much risk.  But the press and politicians fail to even acknowledge this largest voting block, citizens who, by and large, see no purpose in voting.  If they did, they would vote (except for those still barred by institutional barriers).

Vote nullification advocates celebrate
their sure victory July 5, Election Day
photo:  Salamandra Negra

A Matter of Trust - The July 5 Mexican Legislative Elections

A Three Part Series Part 1

In the wake of Felipe Calderon’s surprising electoral win over Andrés Manual Lopez-Obrador in 2006 Presidential Elections, demonstrators protesting alleged election fraud occupied the center of Mexico City from July through December. On three occasions, crowds of over one million were reported. Image: Erasmo Lopez

Michael Collins and Kenneth Thomas

"Se requiere que las ciudadanos no estén ausentes ante una clase política que, desde el punto de vista ciudadano, no ha respondido y claramente ha fallado," dijo el Presidente de la República. Sociedad civil confronta a los poderes de la Unión El Universal, June 25, 2009

Translation: "It is necessary that the citizens not be seated behind a political class which, from the citizen’s point of view, clearly has failed," said the President of the Republic. (President of Mexico, Felipe Calderon El Universal, June 25, 2009)

"Independent analysis of the early vote reports indicated that there was little relationship between actual precinct totals and those reported by the Federal Electoral Institute, the IFE.  .  .  .  A graph of the initial results also revealed an odd statistical curve that looked more like the result of a computer algorithm rather than real vote totals."

Every once in a while, a politician tells the unvarnished truth. It's difficult to recall the last time it happened. Outgoing president Dwight D. Eisenhower's 1961 warning of the dangers of the U.S. military-industrial complex comes to mind. Ike told the truth but too late to matter since he was leaving power. President Calderon is just three years into his six year term as President of Mexico. Just two days prior to Calderon's statement, Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador (ALMO), Calderon's opponent in the bitterly contested 2006 presidential election, had filed a complaint against the media conglomerate owned television network, Televisa. Obrador argued that Televisa has shown extraordinary bias against his party, the PRD. Candidates are entitled to make complaints about biased coverage to the Federal Electoral Institute (IFE) created as part of Mexico's 1990 election reform law. Obrador said:

"I stand in front of you because you are the owners of Televisa and because you form part of the power elite in Mexico.

"I have considered... that you may disagree with my certainty that the national tragedy is the fault of a group which is guilty of acquiring enormous wealth through the employment of public power, and at the cost of suffering for the majority of the Mexican people." El Universal, June 23, 2009

ALMO's point reflects the fact that Televisa is owned and run by one of the twenty families, the wealthiest people in Mexico who dominate the political and economic life of Mexicans.

As their parties approach the 2009 legislative elections, the opponents from the bitterly contested 2006 presidential election seem to suddenly agree. Calderon's "political class," which he says has failed the people, rules "at the bequest of" Mexico's narrow moneyed elite, the class that the "leftist" Lopez-Obrador is accusing of biased coverage in the congressional campaign.

In the speech quoted in the opening of this article, Calderon admits "that the situation in place in matters of security and justice "is, without doubt, a consequence of many of our omissions, of indolence, of corruption, of illegality and of impunity' "June 25, 2009.

"Who can the Mexican people trust?”

The 2006 Mexican presidential election set the stage for this year's July 5 national election for Mexico's bicameral Congress of the Union consisting of the Chamber of Representatives (500 members) and the Senate (128 members). As of June 25, 2009, the two major candidates for president in 2006 see the election system as biased and flawed. ALMO's affirmation is explicit and Calderon says that the problems are related to class issues.

Numerous irregularities in 2006 raised suspicions. ALMO ran an effective campaign and was expected to win. Independent analysis of the early vote reports indicated that there was little relationship between actual precinct totals and those reported by the Federal Electoral Institute, the IFE.

Iranian Election Fraud: Who Was the Real Target?

Original source: http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0906/S00163.htm

Tuesday, 16 June 2009
by Michael Collins

Iranian Election Fraud 2009:  Who was the Real Target and Why?

There most certainly was election fraud in Iran in this election and every previous election under the current electoral system. The question is not, did fraud take place in this most recent election? Of course it did. You just need to study the Iranian Constitution and recent Iranian elections understand that, a step skipped by the major media and some nay-saying bloggers in the United States.

The real questions are who or what was the target of the fraud and why? The 2009 presidential election produced a 75% turnout, an alleged landslide victory for incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and widespread protests by supporters of the losing candidates. It also produced a pervasive and violent crack down by Iranian authorities.  

The reelection of Ahmadinejad is highly significant to Iranians and the rest of the world. Iran is a major oil supplier and a political actor of major proportions in the South Asia and the Middle East. Iran may join the list of nations with nuclear weapons soon, it appears.

(Left:  Is this man the target of Iranian election fraud?
Hashemi Rafsanjani, former two-term president
and Iranian power broker.

The most pressing current problem with Iran is posed by the nation's president who happens to be certifiably insane. He is a holocaust denier; not just once but every time he's asked. Ahmadinejad even hosted a world conference for other deniers. The existence of the holocaust is not a required issue for discussion by Iranian politicians. Ahmadinejad actually goes out of his way to showcase his break with reality. He also continues the repellent advocacy of the death penalty for homosexuality and for capital crimes by children.

Yet he was approved once again by Iran's Guardian Council as a candidate for the nation's highest office.The council consists of six Islamic jurists appointed by the Supreme Leader of Iran and six from the Majlis, Iran's popularly elected parliament. They screen presidential candidates through background checks and a detailed written examination. Very few pass the test. Since 2004, the council has routinely rejected reform candidates. That's the fraud. It couldn't be more obvious.

Copyright MMV Siavush Randjbar-Daemi

"Statistically and mathematically, it is impossible to maintain such perfect linear relations between the votes of any two candidates in any election -- and at all stages of vote counting.   This is particularly true about Iran, a large country with a variety of ethnic groups   who usually vote for a candidate who is ethnically one of their own." 
--The Teheran Bureau, Muhammad Sahimi, June 13, 2009 (or pdf of site).
Syndicate content