Iowa and Texas to OSCE election observers: Stand back or face arrest

Iowa and Texas to OSCE election observers: Stand back or face arrest

Last week we noted Florida Rep. and Senate candidate Connie Mack’s freakout over the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe  — which he seemed to confuse with the U.N. — sending observers to monitor U.S. elections. Now, Politico reports, two states are not exactly rolling out the welcome mat for the observers: 

Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz — like Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott last week — on Tuesday threatened Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe election observers with arrest if they came within 300 feet of a polling place’s entrance, in violation of state law. (In Texas, it’s 100 feet.)

“My office met with two delegation representatives last week to discuss Iowa’s election process, and it was explained to them that they are not permitted at the polls,” Schultz said in a statement. “Iowa law is very specific about who is permitted at polling places, and there is no exception for members of this group.”

The Texas statement went further:
[Abbot’s] letter goes on to accuse the group of having met with liberal organizations that oppose Voter ID laws. The OSCE put out an interim report last week saying that “recent state-level legislative initiatives to limit early voting and introduce stricter voter identification have become highly polarized.”
The OSCE has monitored six previous U.S. elections without incident.