The Iranian Foreign Ministry on Monday urged U.S. officials to focus on fixing their own country's "nontransparent" and undemocratic system before calling into question the legitimacy of elections in other nations.
Abbas Mousavi, spokesperson for Iran's Foreign Ministry, told reporters that the U.S. system "ignores the vote of the majority of people" and said "American officials had better address questions" about the country's elections from the U.S. public.
Mousavi appeared to be referring to the Electoral College, the archaic system the U.S. uses to elect its president every four years. Two of the last three presidents—George W. Bush and Donald Trump—have lost the popular vote yet won the presidential election thanks to the Electoral College.
Democratic presidential candidates Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Tom Steyer, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Pete Buttigieg have all expressed support for abolishing the Electoral College.
Mousavi's remarks came in response to a video released last Friday by the U.S. State Department characterizing Iran's upcoming Feb. 21 parliamentary elections as fraudulent.
"The regime would have you believe that these are free and fair elections," U.S. Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook said in the video. "But the real voting takes place in secret and long before Feb. 21. The clerics pick the winners and losers before the ballots are even cast."
Special Rep. Hook: The Iranian regime is holding what it calls “elections” on February 21. But the clerics pick the winners & losers before the ballots are even cast. We call on the Iranian regime to give the Iranian people a real choice & let their voice be heard. #IranElections pic.twitter.com/BTyvuXhx21
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— Department of State (@StateDept) February 14, 2020
Democratic presidential campaigns and activists in the U.S. are voicing concerns that this week's Nevada caucuses could be plagued by the same issues—from technology failures to lack of preparation—that threw the Iowa caucus into chaos earlier this month.
One Democratic volunteer warned based on training sessions hosted by the Nevada Democratic Party that the caucus could be a "complete disaster," pointing to the iPads the party plans to use to record and submit results.
An anonymous aide to a Democratic presidential campaign told the Washington Post Sunday that "it feels like the [Nevada State Democratic Party is] making it up as they go along."
"That's not how we need to be running an election," the aide said.