Monday, August 18, 2008

US Troops Denied Opportunities to Vote

From CJ:

Most U.S. Troops in Iraq and Afghanistan will not get a chance to vote this year because bureaucrats and politicians in Washington have done absolutely nothing to repair a systemic problem that literally stops most of our troops from voting.

Only 5.5 percent of U.S. troops serving overseas were able to vote and actually have their vote counted in 2006, according to the Federal Election Assistance Commission. We should be guaranteeing that EVERY SINGLE MILITARY MAN AND WOMAN will have their ballot counted.

The House and Senate are currently stalling on legislation that would improve troops' access to voting, voting instead to go on a 5-week vacation. A resolution for Congress to crack down on the Department of Defense to streamline the voting process for soldiers has been introduced by Rep. Roy Blunt (R-MO), but the proposal has been blocked by politicians in the House of Representatives. Blunt's resolution is now stuck in the House Armed Services subcommittee with no prospects of moving forward.

Voting deadlines are rapidly approaching in some states and the mail delivery times from Iraq and Afghanistan can be long. We must send voting registration cards now.

I am the voting assistance officer for my unit. No matter how a Soldier is going to vote, he/she deserves to have their voice heard. Our troops are responsible for Iraqis being able to vote for the first time in their lives, yet our votes aren't counted because of hiccups in the system. So, let's bypass the system.

Please pass the attached FPCA (Federal Post Card Application) to deployed Soldiers or their family members to ensure they have a chance. If they any questions about how to fill out the card, feel free to give them my email address and I will gladly help. I'm also including the postage paid envelope that the FPCA should be mailed in and here is the link to find the address to which they can mail the information:

There is also a site that allows military members to use a new automated tool to register/request a ballot. They can go HERE and register if they have online access, which will facilitate their registration.

Thanks for your help.

A Soldier's Perspective

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