2014 Elections Calendar


Here are my 14 elections to watch in 2014.

Here are 14 more elections to watch in 2014.

Here are 14 potential game-changers for world politics in 2014.

Please click here for the 2013 calendar of world elections.

* * * * *


January 5: Bangladesh — parliamentary
January 14-15: Egypt — constitutional referendum


February 2: Costa Rica — parliamentary and presidential (1st round)
February 2: El Salvador — presidential (1st round)
February 2: Thailand — parliamentary
February 9: Switzerland — referendum
February 9: Tokyo (Japan) — gubernatorial
February 28: Orange Democratic Movement (Kenya) — internal leadership elections


March 6-7: European People’s Party — convention to determine European Commission presidential candidate
March 9: Colombia — parliamentary
March 9: El Salvador — presidential (runoff)
March 15: South Australia — state assembly
March 15: Tasmania (Australia) — state assembly
March 15: Slovakia — presidential (1st round)
March 16: Serbia — parliamentary
March 16: Crimea (Ukraine) — status referendum
March 22: Maldives — parliamentary
March 23: France — municipal (1st round)
March 23: Paris (France) — mayoral (1st round)
March 23: Osaka (Japan) — mayoral
March 29: Slovakia — presidential (runoff)
March 30: France — municipal (2nd round)
March 30: Paris (France) — mayoral (2nd round)
March 30: Thailand — senatorial
March: Antigua and Barbuda — parliamentary


April 5: Afghanistan — presidential
April 6: Hungary — parliamentary
April 6: Costa Rica — presidential (runoff)
April 6: Bogotá (Colombia) — mayoral recall election
April 7: Québec (Canada) — parliamentary
April 7: India — parliamentary (first of nine phases)
April 9: Indonesia — parliamentary
April 9: India — parliamentary (second of nine phases)
April 10: India — parliamentary (third of nine phases)
April 10: Orissa (India) — state assembly (first of two phases)
April 12: India — parliamentary (fourth of nine phases)
April 12: Sikkim (India) — state assembly
April 13: Guinea Bissau — presidential and parliamentary
April 13: Macedonia — presidential (first round)
April 17: Algeria — presidential
April 17: India — parliamentary (fifth of nine phases)
April 17: Orissa (India) — state assembly (second of two phases)
April 24: India — parliamentary (sixth of nine phases)
April 27: Macedonia — parliamentary and presidential (second round)
April 30: Iraq — parliamentary
April 30: India — parliamentary (seventh of nine phases)
April 30: Andhra Pradesh (India) — state assembly (first of two phases)


May 4: Panama — presidential and parliamentary
May 7: South Africa — parliamentary
May 7: India — parliamentary (eighth of nine phases)
May 7: Andhra Pradesh (India) — state assembly (second of two phases)
May 11: Lithuania — presidential (first round)
May 12: India — parliamentary (ninth of nine phases)
May 20: Malawi — presidential and parliamentary
May 21: South Africa — presidential (indirect)
May 22-25: European Union — parliamentary
May 25: Belgium — parliamentary
May 25: Lithuania — presidential (runoff)
May 25: Colombia — presidential (1st round)
May 25: Ukraine — presidential (1st round)
May 26-27: Egypt — presidential
May: Lebanon — presidential (indirect, ongoing)
May: South Africa — presidential (indirect)


June 1: Uruguay — presidential primaries
June 3: Syria — presidential
June 8: Kosovo — parliamentary
June 12: Ontario (Canada) — parliamentary
June 12: Antigua and Barbuda — parliamentary
June 14: Israel — presidential (indirect)
June 14: Afghanistan — presidential (runoff)
June 14: Kansallinen Kokoomus (National Coalition, Finland) —
leadership contest
June 15: Ukraine — presidential (runoff)
June 15: Colombia — presidential (runoff)
June 21: Mauritania — presidential (1st round)
June 25: Libya — parliamentary
June: Yemen — constitutional referendum/span>


July 5: Mauritania — presidential (runoff)
July 9: Indonesia — presidential
July 13: Slovenia — parliamentary
July 19-20: Partido Socialista Obrero Español (Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party) — leadership contest
July 20: Thailand — parliamentary


August 10: Turkey — presidential (first round)
August 24: Turkey — presidential (runoff)
August 24: Abkhazia (Georgia/Russia) — presidential
August 29: Sint Maarten (Netherlands) — parliamentary
August 31: Saxony (Germany) — state assembly
August 31: Macao — chief executive (indirect)


September 14: Brandeburg (Germany) — state assembly
September 14: Thuringia (Germany) — state assembly
September 14: Sweden — parliamentary
September 17: Fiji — parliamentary
September 18: Scotland (UK) — independence referendum
September 20: New Zealand — parliamentary
September 22: New Brunswick (Canada) — provincial assembly


October 4: Latvia — parliamentary
October 5: Brazil — parliamentary and presidential (1st round)
October 5: Bulgaria — parliamentary
October 12: Bolivia — presidential and parliamentary
October 12: Bosnia and Herzegovina — presidential and parliamentary
October 12: Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina — presidential and parliamentary
October 12: Republika Sprska — presidential and parliamentary
October 12: Sao Tome and Principe — parliamentary
October 15: Mozambique — presidential
October 15: Haryana (India) — state assembly
October 15: Maharashtra (India) — state assembly
October 24: Botswana — parliamentary
October 26: Uruguay — parliamentary and presidential (1st round)
October 26: Brazil — presidential (runoff)
October 26: Ukraine — parliamentary
October 26: Haiti — parliamentary
October 26: Tunisia — parliamentary
October 27: Toronto (Canada) — mayoral
October: Ghana — death penalty referendum


November 2: Romania — presidential (first round)
November 4: United States — congressional and gubernatorial
November 9: Catalunya (Spain) — independence referendum (unofficial)
November 16: Romania — presidential (runoff)
November 16: Lebanon — parliamentary
November 22: Bahrain — parliamentary (1st round)
November 23: Tunisia — presidential (1st round)
November 23: Calabria (Italy) — parliamentary
November 23: Emilia-Romagna (Italy) — parliamentary
November 25: Jammu and Kashmir (India) — state assembly (first of five phases)
November 25: Jharkhand (India) — state assembly (first of five phases)
November 27: Tonga — parliamentary
November 28: Greenland (Denmark) — parliamentary
November 29: Union pour un mouvement populaire (Union for a Popular Movement) — leadership contest
November 29: Bahrain — parliamentary (2nd round)
November 29: Namibia — presidential and parliamentary
November 29: Victoria (Australia) — state assembly
November 30: Uruguay — presidential (runoff)
November 30: Moldova — parliamentary


December 8: Dominica — parliamentary
December 10: Mauritius — parliamentary
December 14: Japan — parliamentary
December 17-18: ZANU-PF (Zimbabwe) — leadership election
December 20: Jharkhand (India) — state assembly (fifth of five phases)
December 20: Jammu and Kashmir (India) — state assembly (first of five phases)
December 21: Uzbekistan — parliamentary
December 21: Tunisia — presidential (runoff)
December: Dominica — parliamentary
December: Switzerland — presidential (indirect)

By end-of-year: Egypt — parliamentary
December: Tuvalu — parliamentary



14 potential game-changers for world politics in 2014


Though I rang in the new year with a list of 14 world elections to watch in the coming year (and 14 more honorable mentions to keep an eye on), I wanted to showcase a few more thoughts about what to watch for in world politics and foreign affairs in 2014.

Accordingly, here are 14 possible game-changers — they’re not predictions per se, but neither are they as far-fetched as they might seem.  No one can say with certainty that they will come to pass in 2014.  Instead, consider these something between rote predictions (e.g., that violence in Iraq is getting worse) and outrageous fat-tail risks (e.g., the impending breakup of the United States).

There’s an old album of small pieces conducted by the late English conductor Sir Thomas Beecham, a delightfully playful album entitled Lollipops that contains some of the old master’s favorite, most lively short pieces.

Think of these as Suffragio‘s 14 world politics lollipops to watch in 2014.

We start in France… Continue reading 14 potential game-changers for world politics in 2014

Brian Schweitzer, Montana’s foremost foreign policy expert


In the United States, it’s never too soon to start thinking about the next presidential race, even though the 2016 primary season won’t kick off for another 24 months, and voters have to get through the 2014 midterm elections in November before fully turning to 2016.USflagmontana

But this fairly engaging snippet comes from David Weigel’s Slate interview with former Montana governor Brian Schweitzer:

The Iranian deal makes sense. We linked up with the Saudis before and after World War II. Look, unlike virtually every member of Congress, I have a pretty good firsthand knowledge of the Middle East. The day after I got out of graduate school, after I defended my thesis, I went straight to Libya. I was there for a year; I was in Saudi Arabia for seven. I learned to speak Arabic. I can explain to you, in a way that almost no one else in the country can, the difference between a Sunni and a Shia. I can explain to you who and what the Wahhabis are in Saudi Arabia. I can talk to you about why we, the United States, initially got involved with the Saudi royal family, what we got out of the deal. I can explain to you why we knew Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. We knew, because we supplied chemical weapons to him so he could poison the Iranians. The Iranians are Persian, not Arab; they haven’t got along for several thousand years.So we’ve had a bad history with Iran because of what we did in 1953, replacing an elected official with a dictator. If we can build a relationship that’s a little more even-handed, if we can get them to back away from their nuclear ambition—let’s face it, their neighbors don’t even like that—if we were to step up and said we’re no longer just going to take the Saudis’ position all the time, you don’t have to worry about us attacking you from Afghanistan or Iraq, if you agree to back away from your nuclear ambitions, we’ll be neutral.

When was the last time that you heard a candidate for US president — on either the Republican or Democratic side — who has such an immediately strong command of foreign policy, especially the historical cause-and-effect that so few US policymakers seem to understand?  When was the last time that a governor with such a command of foreign policy? And it’s not California or New York or Texas, but Montana, a landlocked Western state with a population of just over one million people.

Here’s a checklist:

  • Schweitzer speaks Arabic. (who knew?)
  • Schweitzer opposed the war on Iraq, which now seems like a no-brainer. (But in any event…)
  • He opposes the continued US occupation in Afghanistan, given that US forces essentially the nullified the Taliban’s reach in 2001-02.
  • He thinks Edward Snowden, the consultant that leaked the extent of the National Security Agency’s global and internet surveillance efforts, should be pardoned.
  • France and the United Kingdom have more capitalist health care systems because their governments negotiate hard over prices (that’s an argument that takes some brass, I’ll note).
  • The drug war ‘appears’ to have been lost, though Schweitzer didn’t mention the ongoing (and ridiculous) paramilitary US anti-drug efforts in Latin America today.
  • In mentioning the 1953 coup against Iranian president Mohammad Mossadegh, he demonstrates that he knows Iran’s history — and US-Iranian relations — predates 1979.
  • He knows that the United States supplied chemical weapons to Iraq in the 1980s, which Saddam Hussein used against Iranians.  (If you’re keeping score, that was the last time chemical weapons had been used in the Middle East prior to the Syrian attack outside Damascus in August 2013).

I wish Weigel had asked Schweitzer more about the US drone program, the difference between covert and clandestine operations, the use of both special forces and the Central Intelligence Agency, targeted killings of both foreign nationals and US citizens, the destabilization of Yemen and Somalia by US forces in the 2000s and 2010s, and the controversial US killing of Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud, whose death virtually meant the end of any peace talks with the Pakistani government and its new prime minister Nawaz Sharif.

Oh, and don’t forget this gem: ‘If you ask generals whether we should stay in a war a little longer, that’s like asking a barber whether you need a haircut.’

Keep your eyes on this one — I knew Schweitzer was an impressive two-term governor who won election as a Democrat in a very Republican state (Mitt Romney won Montana in the 2012 presidential election by a margin of 55.3% to just 41.8% for US president Barack Obama).  But I had no idea the depth of his foreign policy knowledge.  Impressive, even though the Democratic presidential nomination seems today like it’s almost certain to be Hillary Clinton’s for the taking.