Town Hall Meeting
Chargé d'Affaires Samuel R. Watson's Town Hall Remarks
June 28, 2012
Good evening. I want to thank you for coming to our second Town Hall meeting of 2012. These meetings allow us to provide you with updates from the embassy, American citizen services and the security environment in Burundi. It is also a great way to meet other Americans that are living and working here in Burundi and share other types of information that we know is vital to U.S. Citizens overseas -- like the quality of local schools and hospitals, or where to find the best hamburger.
Independence Day is rapidly approaching and hopefully all of your holiday preparations are going well. As we celebrate the birth of our nation, we should also remember what it is that still keeps us free two hundred and thirty-six years after first declaring that the people should have a choice in their government - voting.
Americans living abroad have the right to cast votes and make their choices known. 2012 is a presidential election year, and I urge each of you to exercise that right. In addition to the presidency, this election cycle will also determine seats for one-third of the Senate, and the entire House of Representatives. Many U.S. elections within the past ten years have been decided by a margin of victory of less than 0.1%. All states are required to count every absentee ballot as long as it's valid and reaches local election officials by the absentee ballot receipt deadline. This is why your vote does count, and I urge you to exercise it.
Our consular officer will further outline to you the details of voting absentee overseas. Please join me in welcoming her.
Click here for a link to a step-by-step guide to voting overseas.
- American citizens gathered at the Chargé d'Affaires' residence on the evening of June 28, 2012 for a U.S. citizens' town hall meeting. Chargé d'Affaires Samuel R. Watson made remarks, with a focus on registering to vote, and voting absentee, in the upcoming 2012 elections. After the meeting, U.S. Embassy staff registered citizens to vote at the American Citizens Services table.