Obama Campaign Sues to Restrict Military Voting

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President Barack Obama, along with many Democrats, likes to say that, while they may disagree with the GOP on many issues related to national security, they absolutely share their admiration and dedication to members of our armed forces. Obama, in particular, enjoys being seen visiting troops and having photos taken with members of our military. So, why is his campaign and the Democrat party suing to restrict their ability to vote in the upcoming election?

On July 17th, the Obama for America Campaign, the Democratic National Committee, and the Ohio Democratic Party filed suit in OH to strike down part of that state’s law governing voting by members of the military. Their suit said that part of the law is “arbitrary” with “no discernible rational basis.”

Currently, Ohio allows the public to vote early in-person up until the Friday before the election. Members of the military are given three extra days to do so. While the Democrats may see this as “arbitrary” and having “no discernible rational basis,” I think it is entirely reasonable given the demands on servicemen and women’s time and their obligations to their sworn duty.

The National Defense Committee reports:

[f]or each of the last three years, the Department of Defense’s Federal Voting Assistance Program has reported to the President and the Congress that the number one reason for military voter disenfranchisement is inadequate time to successfully vote.

I think it’s unconscionable that we as a nation wouldn’t make it as easy as possible for members of the military to vote. They arguably have more right to vote than the rest of us, since it is their service and sacrifice that ensures we have the right to vote in the first place.

If anyone proposes legislation to combat voter fraud, Democrats will loudly scream that the proposal could “disenfranchise” some voter, somewhere. We must ensure, they argue, that voting is easy and accessible to every single voter. Every voter, that is, except the men and women of our military.

Make no mistake, the Democrat lawsuit is intended to disenfranchise some unknown number of military voters. The judge should reject it with prejudice.#Link

Military voters deserve to have every opportunity possible to cast their ballot, and in Ohio, we have worked with Ohio military organizations to ensure they do,” says Jon Husted, Ohio Secretary of State. “This premise of the Obama campaign’s lawsuit is that because of the high level of support we offer to members of the military and their families, the rest of Ohioans are somehow being treated unfairly. I fundamentally disagree and will make no apologies for the additional flexibility we have afforded our service members to participate in Ohio elections. The truth is there is plenty of opportunity for all voters to participate in the election this November whether they choose to vote early, by mail or on Election Day.”

In Ohio, state law allows families of armed forces members and civilians overseas to vote through the Monday before an election while early voting for all other Ohioans ends the preceding Friday. The Obama campaign wants a court order to invalidate the Ohio statutes.

“The men and women serving in the U.S. military, who risk their lives for us, have often been denied the basic right to vote,” says Harry Prestanski, executive director and founding member of Ohio Veterans United. “Our mission is to ensure that military voters have the ability to cast their votes and to have them counted. This lawsuit is an intentional attack on those serving in the military and purposely disenfranchises those serving their country.”

Ohio was recently recognized by The Military Voter Protection (MVP) Project for their leadership in promoting and protecting the voting rights of America’s military service members and their families.

Ohio House Bill Number 194, House Bill Number 224 and Senate Bill Number 295 were enacted by the 129th Ohio General Assembly. These laws allows voters using the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voter Act (“UOCAVA”) to vote early in-person at a board of elections office up through the Monday before Election Day, while non-UOCAVA voters can vote early in-person at a board of elections office (or designated alternate site) only up until 6 p.m. on the Friday before Election Day. Basically, the Ohio Legislature recognized the undue hardship imposed on those military men and women serving and provided an additional three days for them to vote.The lawsuit by the Obama campaign would eliminate the extra three days allowed the military.

“I find this move by the Obama campaign and the Democratic Party to be offensive,” said Prestanski. “In 2000, the Democratic party disenfranchised military voters using absentee ballots when key Democratic Party officials led a campaign to have numerous military ballots be disqualified .It was disgusting then and it is disgusting now.”

When Governor Romney was asked about the Obama campaign filing suit in Ohio to try to reduce early voting by a few days for the military Romney replied, “You know, I haven’t seen that report and so I can’t comment on the specific filing that you described. I can tell you that I believe our military and the men and women in uniform have an absolute right to speak in this election. Their lives are affected by what happens in policies here in the country and the direction of America. And in my view, every effort should be taken by the government of the United States of America to assure that every member of the military has the right to vote and their vote is counted. Any effort to impede the right of our military members overseas or here domestically in voting would be an extraordinary violation of the trust that we should have for those who serve so valiantly.”

The Ohio case is Obama for America v. Husted, 12-cv-636, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio (Columbus). Ohio Attorney General Michael DeWine and Secretary Husted have both filed papers opposing the Obama campaign’s complaint.

Fifteen military organizations have joined the Obama v. Husted case to fight to preserve military voting rights!

They include:

National Guard Association

Association of the U.S. Army

Association of the U.S. Navy

Marine Corps League

Military Officers Association of America

Reserve Officers Association

National Association for Uniformed Services

Non Commissioned Officers Association of the USA

Army Reserve Association

Fleet Reserve Association

Special Forces Association

U.S. Army Ranger Association, INC.

AMVETS

National Defense Committee

Military Order of the World Wars #Link

One Response

  1. Archie1954 says:

    This story is simply not true! The President is not suing to restrict military voting, plain and simple!

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