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The Winning Party of the Iranian Elections that Might Surprise Congress

June 16, 2009

ALL WALKS OF LIFE: Tens of thousands of supporters of the opposition candidate in Iran turn out in Tehran’s Freedom Square to protest the result of Friday’s presidential election.(Washington Times)

Q. Who really won the Iranian elections?

Amidst all the controversy as the heartbreaking events unfold—there is one answer to this question that really merits all of our profound respect….

A. The Iranian people

And just to be clear—I do mean all of the Iranian people from across the political spectrum who participated in the not-so-democratic-yet-not-a-dictatorship process–through voting and through the many other non-violent ways Iranians have struggled for democracy.

I am in absolute awe of their resolve—the fact that untold thousands braved the street protesting what is widely seen as a stolen election. These protesters literally risked—and nine protesters gave—their lives in the state’s brutal crack down.

Nearly 85% of Iranians turned out for this vote—that’s 25% more voters than turned out in the last election. To compare (apples & oranges sort of comparison though it may be), during the last U.S. presidential 63% of eligible voters turned out for the historic election.


Before Ahmadinejad declared victory, I saw this humorous tweet—making fun of the episode where Sen. Coleman declared victory when a recount established he wasn’t quite so victorious after all.

But I have some news for the U.S. Congress & the U.S. Media…


And regardless of the results of the recount that the Iranian government declared it would do or the results of a re-vote which so many Mousavi supporters are demanding—Congress needs to get it in their heads that they did not win. That’s right—even in an Iranian election with international observers to affirm that they were fully free and fair—say like the 2006 Palestinian elections when Hamas won—Congress did not win.

So it’s absolutely crazy—and excruciatingly dangerous—that some members of Congress are exploiting this political earthquake in Iran to push their own militaristic agendas.

Rep. Rohrabacher (CA) tweets:

“The fraudulent Iranian election has mobilized opposition to the Mullah regime; the U.S. should back them, now’s the time for a regime change”

Rep. Pence (IN) tells CNN that President Obama should openly back Mousavi in the Iranian election turmoil:

“I’m hoping, before the end of the day today, the President of the United States will speak a word of support for Mr. Moussavi and for the dissidents and the reformers within Iran,” said Pence

I guess they didn’t get the memo that:


(Thanks to the National Iranian American Council for picking these quotes up and for their excellent coverage during the entire election crisis.)

The absolute LAST thing that Iranians need right now is for the U.S. to pick their Iranian favorites.

This victory is not for Congress–in fact congressional endorsement of military threats, sanctions, and regime change has only bolstered hardliners in Iran.

The people to celebrate are the Iranian people–and their own indigenous struggle for change that they–and only they–can claim as their own.

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