COMING CLEAN

Guardian Council Downplays Fraud

A change in opinion from Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his inner circle? The Guardian Council, which implements the supreme leader’s decrees, has admitted that the number of votes tallied after the June 12 presidential election in 50 Iranian cities surpasses the number of eligible voters, indicating widespread fraud. (And Press TV, Iran’s semi-official news agency, is actually reporting the admission.) Still, the council is downplaying the revelation, saying it “it has yet to be determined whether the possible change in the tally is decisive in the election results.” The reexamination of votes was carried out in response to a request by Mohsen Rezaie, a conservative candidate defeated in the controversial election. A spokesman for the council is pointing to the fact that fraud was found in just 50 cities, instead of 170, as originally thought, as a sign that the elections may not have been all that corrupt.