“The constitutional convention declared that Nkurunziza, who is the President, had a legal election, and we ought to stay out of their business” – U.S Sen. Jim Inhofe
Mr. INHOFE: Mr. President, let me say in response that a couple of times my good friend from Delaware has observed that the American people are not stupid, but the American people also want highways. That is one of the big things they want. In fact, we have a document called a Constitution that says we are supposed to be doing two things here: defending America, and roads and bridges. And I think we both agree on the significance of that.
I hope I will have time to get into something because our State Department of the United States of America is getting involved in Burundi, in their election. They had a duly-qualified election. The constitutional convention declared that Nkurunziza, who is the President, had a legal election, and we ought to stay out of their business. If there is time, I would like to elaborate on that, but I know I am competing for time.
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Lastly, I do want to mention that on this whole issue in Burundi right now, we have to understand in this country that there are other nations that have their own systems of government. They are the ones that have their elections. In this case, I happened to be there in Burundi when the court declared that the incumbent President, Nkurunziza, was qualified to run again, even though they have a term limit. The first term was not a complete term, so that didn’t count, according to the court. For us to come in afterward and say “Well, we think the court was wrong, we don’t think he is qualified to run, and we are going to withhold things from that country” is something we should not be doing in this country.
I can assure my colleagues that the six Members who went with me over there were all on the scene and agreed that Nkurunziza should be legitimately elected, and we should stay out of their business.
With that, I yield the floor
James Mountain Inhofe is the senior United States senator from Oklahoma and a member of the Republican Party
(Washington, Tuesday November 10th 2015)