Vaudeville in Paris: I don’t know whether to laugh or cry, M. Frindéthié

A Vaudeville is being staged in France at this moment, which could have caused us to burst in forthright hilarity, were it not for the tragic historical precedent that such an event had set elsewhere—precisely nineteen months ago in Cote d’Ivoire.

François Copé, the man who was declared the winner by 98 votes of France’s conservative UMP leadership election, won because 1,304 ballots from 3 French overseas territories were not counted at all. Was this omission by design? Was there a real intent within the party to manipulate votes in order to get rid of Sarkozy’s former Prime Minister, François Fillon, considered too moderate for a political party that is increasingly courting Marine Lepen’s extremists? Fillon thinks so. After protesting for two days, Fillon finally has proof that were the missing ballots counted, he would have been declared the winner by 28 votes.

The situation in France remains chaotic, and the UMP is more divided than ever, as Fillon’s supporters demand that the ballots be recounted … a second time … the first time having taken place yesterday.

Vote recount? Is it not what people usually do in such electoral crises? Is it not what was recently done in Haiti and Afghanistan? Is it not what was done in Florida during the Gore/Bush electoral crisis? And more recently in Florida in the congressional bout opposing Allen West to Patrick Murphy? One would think that vote recount should be the logical thing to do when not sure of who really won.

It is interesting that the same people who are calling for ballot recount today in France are those who ordered French troops to shell President Laurent Gbagbo’s Palace and kill thousands of his supporters … just because he demanded a vote recount to determine the real winner of the 2010 Ivorian presidential election.

Hiccup! Talk of reciprocity!

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