David Plouffe is visiting Baku, meeting President Gonzo, and speaking to a “government mouthpiece” about democracy. Mind you, there is a referendum on doing away with pesky presidential term limits (among other things) coming up on March 18. In Azerbaijan, you only need a majority of 25 percent of total voters to acquiesce to make massive changes to the Constitution. Thanks for stopping by, David!
UPDATE: Plouffe has announced he will donate his speaking fee – ca. $50,000 – to “groups advocating for democracy” in the region (goeresen, who will be helping him pick them out?) and “sharing his speech” with opposition groups. According to reports, he was unaware of the fact that the Washington lobbyists who arranged his trip have connections with the Azerbaijani government…until en route to Baku. Fine, it’s not like everyone in the world has heard of Azerbaijan and its somewhat sordid electoral history, and he’s a busy guy, but isn’t this the kind of thing you could get your assistant’s assistant to check out for you? A little wikipedia action maybe?