This has been proposed by the Haiti Democracy Project. It has not been accepted.

We members of the Congressional Black Caucus and other members of the House with a longtime concern for Haiti are united in our belief that Haiti must have an unimpeachably clean and fair election to resolve its governance crisis. We call on the parties in the OAS-sponsored talks to agree on elections and we urge the administration and international community to seriously address the security concerns expressed by the opposition, which has been the victim of arson and armed attacks. We believe that if the current Haitian government is unable or unwilling to provide that security, it ought to be provided by international security presence with sufficient capability to deter violence and proceeding from an agreement by all the parties.

 In coming to this position we wish to give an example ourselves of the compromises and modification of previous positions that are always necessary in democratic politics. Some of us have said that the serious irregularities in the previous election should not bar the poorest country in the hemisphere from receiving aid. This should not be misinterpreted in any way to indicate that we endorse those manipulations. All of us in the House take our inspiration from the historical memory of the U.S. civil-rights movement and its motto, one person one vote. We well remember the poll taxes and other “technical” devices that were used to deny the vote. We note that the OAS electoral mission reported that more than a million Haitian votes were thrown out by the miscount method. We strongly affirm that Haitians have no less right to have their votes counted than Americans. If in America people were denied the vote because of skin color, and in Haiti because they voted for the wrong candidates, we find that equally abhorrent. We members of the House, Democrat or Republican, black or white, will stand shoulder-to-shoulder in the coming Haitian electoral period in insisting that the democratic rights of all Haitians be respected and we will accept no excuses or violations.

 Similarly, some of us have questioned whether the United States should get in the nation-building business and have said it is up to the Haitians to resolve their problems. In the post?September 11 period, however, we have seen the obvious connection between U.S. security and the vacuum of power created by a failed state. Many of us have wondered why the United States was able to commit major resources to nation-building in the Balkans but not to the even worse conditions in Africa. We ask the same question now in regards to Haiti, a boat-ride away from our shores. In retrospect, the major intervention initiated by President Clinton should have been followed up by a long-term program of nation-building, using the skills of the Haitian-American diaspora and protected by a remaining security presence. And this should have been supported by a bipartisan coalition in Congress.

 Thus all of us in reaching this new common position calling for the settling of Haiti’s crisis by clean and internationally-protected elections have broken from our previous positions in order to reach common ground. We have found the grain of truth that each side always had. We have studied the post-mortems of the policy-makers and aid technicians of the last fifteen years of experience in Haiti. If in the past Haiti had a “winner-take-all” political culture, both Haiti and the world have now progressed too far for the governance crisis to be resolved in any other way than by scrupulously clean elections in which the results, however diverse, are respected. For us, as Haiti prepares to celebrate the bicentennial of its founding as an independent republic, the right of the Haitians to popular sovereignty is a value that allows no compromise.