June 13th, 2009
05:59 PM ET
9 years ago

White House monitoring ‘reports of irregularities’ in Iran

Iranians protest against the reelection of Ahmadinejad outside the interior ministry in Tehran.

Iranians protest against the reelection of Ahmadinejad outside the interior ministry in Tehran.

(CNN) - The White House is watching closely the results of the Iranian election, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Saturday.

“Like the rest of the world, we were impressed by the vigorous debate and enthusiasm that this election generated, particularly among young Iranians. We continue to monitor the entire situation closely, including reports of irregularities,” Gibbs said in a statement.

The Iranian government announced Saturday that incumbent president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had won the nation’s closely watched election with 62.63 percent of the vote. The results were met with skepticism from supporters of the main challenger, former Prime Minster Mir Hossein Moussavi.

Related: Ahmadinejad hails election as protests grow

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton echoed Gibbs on Saturday, saying, “We watched closely the enthusiasm and the very vigorous debate and dialogue that occurred in the lead up to the Iranian elections.

“We are monitoring the situation as it unfolds in Iran, but we, like the rest of the world, are waiting and watching to see what the Iranian people decide. The United States has refrained from commenting on the election in Iran, we obviously hope that the outcome reflects the genuine will and desire of the Iranian people,” she said.

Angry crowds on Saturday gathered in Iran’s capital and broke into shops, tore down signs and started fires as they protested Ahmadinejad’s re-election, according to a CNN team on the ground.

Before the vote count ended, Moussavi issued a sharply worded letter urging the counting to stop because of "blatant violations" and lashed out at what he indicated was an unfair process.

Moussavi said the results from "untrustworthy monitors" reflected "the weakening of the pillars that constitute the sacred system" of Iran and "the rule of authoritarianism and tyranny." Independent vote monitors were banned from polling places.

What officials have called an unprecedented voter turnout at the polls Friday had been expected to boost Moussavi's chances of winning the presidency.

Filed under: Iran
soundoff (85 Responses)
  1. Scott

    should we be said surprised! I see it getting to point where there will be a bloody revolution it's really sad. Had America just left the government in the '50s alone instead of sending in the CIA and installing the Sha. We would not be in this mess. sometimes you reap what you sow.

    June 13, 2009 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  2. Martin S.

    Irregularities, what are irregularities. I love sheep, yah know. Really love sheep. In fact my first girlfriend was a sheep. Dick Cheney loves sheep so much, he lives in wyoming. So there is no irregularities in Iran that supercede irregularities in wyoming.

    June 13, 2009 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  3. Dixon

    The pictures remind me of the days they took our embassy. Maybe they will take Ahmadinejad hostage for a couple years. Does the phrase reap what you sew mean anything to you, Ahmadinejad.

    June 13, 2009 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  4. John Macomber

    Surprise! Surprise! Who expected anything different.

    June 13, 2009 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  5. Carlos

    With this joke of a administration we have now the whole world is laughing at us. These other countries are daring mobamy to show them anything besides his toothy grin.

    June 13, 2009 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  6. Jeff in Houston

    It's a pity some third world country did step up to question the validity of George II's elections. Or, maybe the current man in charge in Iran read a page out of George's playbook. Same thing, different players, and differing degrees of outrage. I wish the Iranian people success in accomplishing something we American's lacked the courage to protest.

    June 13, 2009 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  7. decent american

    the liberal ideology is that human beings will eventually repsond to reason and education.

    honestly, this concept of human nature does not hold. sometimes you have to accept that evil has to be confronted and DESTROYED. it is called REALITY. itis what it is, i dont like it any more than you do.

    if you all took some time to study the roots of conservative thought and liberal thought you would understand this. it is a way to see the world, liberalism one of "constructing heaven on earth through political means" and conservatism one of realizing the fallen nature of human beings and seeing the limits of gov't and the fact that we can not produce "perfection on earth' we can only work within the imperfection of mankind in the here and now.

    June 13, 2009 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  8. John

    The results don't make sense – there were four candidates in the race and the "bottom two" had over 20% support in the last poll before the election. The results as announced had the two top vote-getters (Ahmadinejad and Mousavi) splitting 98% of the vote – what happened to the other two challengers? Also, the results show Mousavi losing his own home town / province by roughly the same margin as he "lost" the rest of the country – impossible.

    It appears that the current Iran government is not even *trying* to make the results look plausible – just holding the appearance of an election and publishing "results" that suit them.

    June 13, 2009 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  9. virginia nielsen

    If here, that's a real democracy, we had terrible "irregularities" in 2000 presidential elections, can you imagine in a semi-dictatorship government ?

    June 13, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  10. craig donahue

    i.m for health care reform even though i have excellent coverage. the only thing that would anger me is if this reform includes illegal immigriants.

    June 13, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  11. Obamasupporter

    A recount should be done. I don't understand how you could have reported a hugh turnout and say there were long lines with most of the supporters being Moussavi supporters and Ahmadinejad got announced as the winner by a hugh margin. It is either the election was corrupt or what was reported to us was false information biased and one sided toward Moussavi . I would like to konw the real story.

    June 13, 2009 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  12. Mary the Democrat

    We need to be careful and ensure we don't appear to be interfering with their elections.

    June 13, 2009 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  13. CTR

    Perhaps the Peanut Farmer should have set up shop in Iran to ensure the elections were fair.

    June 13, 2009 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  14. Post always rejected by CNN

    Too bad they weren't around in 2000 in the USA> Then they might have really really found irregularities. Especially in the supreme court.

    June 13, 2009 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  15. bsmith171

    'they' could monitor for 100 years.

    Iran doesn't care.
    they know the USA is weak under baby boomer prezzies.

    June 13, 2009 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  16. Alexander

    I really feel for the people of Iran. Did they really think that their will would supersede that of the ayatollah? Still, there is but a glimmer of hope that a silent revolution could overthrow their tyrannic regime. I pray for the young people of Iraq to achieve that.

    June 13, 2009 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  17. Morley

    Gee it looks like Obama needed to send his old group ACORN to Iran if he wanted a different outcome. ACORN could have taught Ahmadinejad oppsition how to fix the election.

    June 13, 2009 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  18. Dan, TX

    This vote shows that the Iranian people want war with the West. It is a slap in the face to those who want peace.

    June 13, 2009 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  19. John

    Does the White House not have better things to Monitor:
    1. Our Economy
    2. Wars
    3. Health Care
    4. Etc.
    How the Heck is it going to matter if it is Ahmadinejad or any other Scoundrel.

    June 13, 2009 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  20. Sam I Am

    This is a very interesting situation. A presidential candidate has won the election. The side that lost is threatening to "take the country back." I wonder if Limbaugh, Hannity, and Beck have broadcast franchises in Iran?

    June 13, 2009 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  21. Doug, Atlanta

    The election was clearly a sham and a clear warning to Obama that Iran will never change in it's intentions. That is to dominant the middle east and aquire nuclear weapons..

    This is the perfect storm for the US and it's allies to help the Iranian people stage a coup but our current goverment does not have the backbone!

    June 13, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  22. How Nice

    Iran no longer has the threat of the US. Why we have a spinless leader in the White House.

    North no longer has the threat of the US. Why?, we have a spineless leader in the White House.

    I truly feel that our security as a nation is in peril. We better wakeup in 2010 and 2012 or this country will be more akin to a Socialist third world country, then the great country it was before OBAMA destroyed it.

    June 13, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  23. Georges

    What's all the fuss with the Iraninan election ? Did someone find a dangling CHAD ?

    June 13, 2009 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  24. Cali J

    Yesterday CNN was reporting on how close this election should be.
    Funny how societies who are unarmed and have no local district representation, often find that after the votes are tallied, the most powerful one wins by a huge margin. Kind of like Chavez or even better, Kim Jung Ill.
    Even if this was rigged, The Supreme Council has already approved. That's all she wrote folks.
    Notice, the internet was shut down right before and after the election as reported on other news sites.

    June 13, 2009 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  25. chris

    this may be the test joe was talking about. i'm a rep. and didn't vote for our pres. while i'm guilty of picking on the vice president in small talk...a part of me thinks he sometimes says what many people are thinking. as this continues to unfold, i hope president obama weighs the influence that western leaning iranians support.

    June 13, 2009 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
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