United Nations election monitors have been banned from overseeing Tennessee elections results. In 2012 liberal-leaning groups voiced their concerns over state voter ID laws to the UN, which then became involved in the ballot casting process in the United States. A total of 44 election monitors were sent to a multitude of states (including Tennessee) to review the process.
Democrats are outspokenly opposed to voters being required to show photo identification before entering the ballot box, claiming that such a simple requirement would amount to voter suppression. States which proposed voter ID laws also included a stipulation which offered a non-cost state issued photo ID card to any residents in need of such a card. Photo IDs are required to cash a check, buy a beer, garner a marriage license, and for a host of other common daily tasks, yet the proposed laws were controversial all the same.
The Tennessee legislature, which has a Republican majority, decided to fight back against the United Nations oversight of American voters. Earlier this week the elected officials passed a bill banning UN election monitors from supervising the process unless given explicit permission from the United States Senate. The pending law is now on Republican Governor Bill Haslam’s desk and expected to be signed in the near future.
Tennessee Republican House sponsor Micah Van Huss deemed the UN election monitors ban an assertion of both state and national sovereignty. Van Huss was among those infuriated by the two UN representatives sent to monitor Tennessee elections simply because a Constitutional law was passed that some political groups did not like. One of the United Nations election monitors was from France, the other from Armenia.
The bill banning UN involvement from the Tennessee election process was just one sentence long and read:
“Any representative of the United Nations appearing without a treaty ratified by the United States Senate stating that the United Nations can monitor elections in this state, shall not monitor elections in this state.”
There was not debate uttered about the bill, which was approved 23-2. The Tennessee House of Representatives approved the measure earlier 75-20 after a little discussion. During a brief floor speech about the voter ID aftermath inspired bill, Representative Van Huss said, “I don’t believe it’s their (United Nations) jurisdiction to monitor us.” Tea Party supportive members were reportedly a driving force behind the legislation which is being heralded by Republicans, Libertarians, and many independent voters as a big win for states’ rights.
[Image Via: Wikimedia Commons]