Karen Bass: 'We Need International Observers for This Election'

September 17, 2020

Congressional Black Caucus chairwoman Karen Bass (D., Calif.) called for "international observers" of the 2020 election on Thursday, comparing the United States to African nations that recently held elections in need of outside legitimation.

"I frankly think we need international observers for this election," Bass said on MSNBC. "I have gone to Kenya, I've gone to Zimbabwe. I have been an international observer, and I think we could use that here."

Bass, who was on the shortlist to be Joe Biden's 2020 running mate, said she wanted to go beyond former director of national intelligence Dan Coats's call for a bipartisan, domestic commission to oversee the 2020 race, saying Republicans could not be trusted because of their push for "voter suppression."

"I think unless we acted proactively and were aggressive about it, I don't think that this would be a fair election," Bass said.

The United States has hosted election observer groups before, such as the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, which has monitored seven U.S. elections since 2002. In 2016, the Organization of American States sent its first mission to observe a U.S. race.

Bass's star rose when she was vetted as a potential vice-presidential pick, but revelations about her past praise of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro and the controversial Church of Scientology doomed her prospects.