Iraqi elections to smooth passage for Bush demands. It's no secret that the Iraqi elections are being keenly followed by the residents of the White House as the outcome can seriously affect U.S. military action in the country and weaken President Bush's political strength domestically and internationally if the results don't lead to stability. (Al Jazeera) [I note with amusement that the story's URL includes the phrase "conspiracy_theory" -ed.]
World leaders hail Iraq vote as key to restoring sovereignty. Messages of support poured in from around the world as Iraqis voted in a landmark election hailed by both supporters and opponents of the US-led war as a key step towards restoring Iraqi sovereignty. [...] (AFP via TurkishPress.com)
World reaction to the Iraq elections. There was cautious optimism across America and the Middle East as the polls closed today in Iraq's first multi-party elections in 50 years. (The Times [UK])
Alissa J. Rubin: Elections no guarantee of a free Iraq. Democracy might take back seat to security. [...] (L.A. Times)
YÜKSEL SÖYLEMEZ: Mock elections in a make-believe Iraq. (Turkish Daily News)
[Italian prime minister] Berlusconi hails Iraqi elections. (AP via Jerusalem Post)
Buried deep in an AP story headlined "Bush Declares Iraq Election a Success",
In a statement Sunday, Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.), said Bush "must look beyond the election." "The best way to demonstrate to the Iraqi people that we have no long-term designs on their country is for the administration to withdraw some troops now" and negotiate further withdrawals, Kennedy added.
"It is hard to say that something is legitimate when whole portions of the country can't vote and doesn't vote," Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), said on NBC's "Meet The Press."
And finally, the current Iraqi election thread on Daily Kos.