Saddam Hussein (Ba'ath Party)
- Ba'ath Party (incumbent)
- Slogan: "Yes, Yes, to Our Beloved Leader, Saddam Hussein."
- Major campaign plank: his heart "beats as one with his people".
- Theme song: I Will Always Love You, by Whitney Houston. A review of the lyrics is necessary to appreciate the irony in this choice, which I would like to imagine as a subversive act by a Western educated Iraqi spin doctor with a philosophical attitude toward mortality. A music video of same features Hussein praying, kissing children, firing an ancient rifle one-handed, waving to the masses and striking heroic poses. He wears a number of costumes: the man-about-town in a black leather trilby, the Iraqi warrior in his army beret and green fatigues, the Arab statesman in his black-and-white keffiyeh. The song and video is being played almost continuously on dawn-to-dusk election broadcasts on the three state-controlled television stations.
Grassroots Campaign Activity:
"Spontaneous demonstration" by Kalashnikov-waving supporters with heavy media coverage, banner-making parties in which supporters used their own blood to write the campaign slogan on enormous white banners, and the commission of even more sculptures of Hussein.
11 million voters will respond "Yes" or "No" to the question "Do you agree that Saddam should remain President?" under the watchful gaze of election officials. Voters write their names on their ballot papers.
The last election was seven years ago, at which time Hussein won 99.89 per cent of the votes cast.
History of the Iraqi Electoral Process:
The current Iraqi electoral process has British roots. In 1921, after the Middle East was reconfigured by the WWI victors, Britain rewarded its ally Hussein ibn Ali by installing his son Faisal (who would later a) become a big Grateful Dead fan and b) get assassinated by his nephew) on the Iraqi throne.
Sayyid Taleb, a popular opposition leader (slogan: "Iraq for the Iraqis") was invited for tea at the High Commissioner"s residence. When he arrived he was promptly arrested, and exiled to Ceylon. While it is conceivable that this was a miscommunication (Ceylon, tea, Ceylon is a kind of tea, etc.), it is likely not coincidental that other dissidents were safely detained behind bars during the election, at the conclusion of which Faisal scored 96%.
According to administration officials, all 11,445,638 of the eligible Iraqi voters cast "Yes" ballots on October 16, 2002.
"This is a unique manifestation of democracy which is superior to all other forms of democracies even in these countries which are besieging Iraq and trying to suffocate it," said official Izzat Ibrahim at a news conference in Baghdad. This was an apparent reference to the United States. In the weeks prior to the Iraqi election, the U.S. Congress attracted the wonderment of many by voting to give President George W. Bush unlimited fiat belli, a power more commonly associated with dictatorships, monarchies, and other oligarchic states.
Also, toalight requested that I edit the conclusion of this node because "Right now it reads like "they gave him fiat belli so now we're like fucking Sweden! And that's not what you mean." And so: just in case anyone was confused, I was not referring to the constitutional monarchy of Sweden, but the general concept of (unmediated) monarchy. Thank you.