Observing the U.S. Election: Lomé, Togo

Election Events: U.S. Embassy in Lomé, Togo

As submitted by embassy staff

I was surprised but pleased that in this day of social media technology and ready access to satellite TV we nonetheless attracted almost 300 people to come to the Embassy to watch the returns of the U.S. elections come in. It was especially impressive that a large number of these individuals stayed throughout the night. We had established two separate rooms decorated with election paraphernalia and featuring live TV feeds in English and in French. People moved between the two areas to compare predictions on how the elections would come out. Throughout the night we gave prizes to the most erudite participants for their ability to answer questions on various aspects of the U.S. government. The Togolese were overwhelmingly supportive of President Obama in a mock vote where the President netted 93 votes to six for Romney and one blank. There were varying moments of tension and cheering. For my part, I emphasized that the real message was this: when we awoke the next day, America would be the same no matter who had prevailed in the vote. Our institutions would remain unchanged, the rule of law would still prevail; and government would be of the people, by the people and for the people, the very bedrock of our democratic foundation.

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