Illegitimate Egyptian Elections - by Stephen Lendman
Supported by Washington, military junta power rules Egypt.
Last February, Mubarak's 30-year dictatorship ended. Another one replaced him. Egypt's military holds absolute power.
Authoritarian dominance is unchallenged. Elections are more theater than real. Egypt's multi-round complex process complicates them further. So do logistics. Understanding what to do is daunting.
The hybrid ballot lists parties and individual candidates. Voters choose from both. Candidates represent professionals and worker/farmers. Influence peddling and fraud are rife.
Egypt's process perhaps has no parallel anywhere. Voters cast three votes, including for scores of new parties and candidates they don't recognize.
Egypt's junta deliberately designed a hard to comprehend complex system despite strong opposition from participating parties.
Individual candidates will be chosen by popular vote. Party totals may not determine representation in Parliament. Party listed candidates will get seats based on how high they're listed.
At issue is controlling the process and outcome.
Vote-counting is especially prone to fraud. One of Stalin's memorable quotes was, "It is enough that the people know there was an election. The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything."
Some results will be announced after each round. Party list ones won't come until January.
Human rights activist Hossam Bahgat complained about Egypt's allegedly first ever "free and fair election," saying "we've opted for one of the world's most complicated electoral systems."
Of course, regime supporters call it free and fair. Independent observers see it otherwise.
Procedurally it works as follows:
- 6,700 candidates are participating;
- Lower House People's Assembly voting is held on November 28, 29, December 14 and January 3; 498 members are chosen for five-year terms - 454 by proportional representation, another 44 in single-seat constituencies, and 10 more members nominated;