Commander in Chief Fails Military Voters, Again

Our armed forces need a commander in chief who protects the most basic right of every American citizen -- the right to vote. Our armed forces risk their safety and their lives to protect each citizen’s right to vote. The president needs to protect theirs.

Obama and his attorney general are responsible for the protection of military voting rights, yet they have stood idly by while our troops have been disenfranchised.

Overseas military voters need ballots sent to them in time so they have the opportunity to vote and to return their ballots. However, various jurisdictions have failed to comply with federal law deadlines to mail the ballots.

Attorney General Eric Holder has been contacted by concerned citizens as well as by senators on the Judiciary Committee urging the Department of Justice to file lawsuits against local authorities across the country that have not sent military ballots in time for servicemembers’ votes to count. Despite receiving this information, the Department of Justice has failed to act in many states, including New Mexico and Connecticut.

Since lawsuits were not filed by our Department of Justice, others outraged by the disenfranchisement of the military have stepped in. Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson and Attorney General Bill Schuette filed a lawsuit against 24 local communities to extend the counting deadline for military ballots. Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign filed a federal lawsuit in Wisconsin, and filed complaints with state election officials in Michigan and Mississippi.

After the Romney campaign filed a complaint in Vermont, the Obama administration followed with a lawsuit in the Green Mountain State claiming an interest in helping military voters. It is, indeed, interesting that the administration chose to institute legal action in a state dominated by Democrats, but not in other, more populous states with greater majorities of Republicans and independents.

Why they did not intercede in crucial swing states such as Michigan or Wisconsin?

Ignoring military voters has unfortunately become a pattern for Obama and his administration. Instead of pursuing cases in Illinois and New York in 2010, the Department of Justice instead focused 2012 efforts on the small territory of Guam.