Tags: Military | Ballots | Are | Not | Junk | Mail

Military Ballots Are Not Junk Mail

Sunday, 19 November 2000 12:00 AM

"For the past twelve days, Vice President Al Gore has been conducting a shameless campaign to steal the presidential election by means of obviously suspect manual recounts. Now the vice president is allowing military voters serving overseas to be denied, through no fault of their own, the right to have their vote counted.

"On Meet the Press this morning, running mate Joseph Lieberman insisted that every vote should count. He declined the opportunity, however, to disavow the activities of campaign lawyers and political functionaries who are treating military ballots like nothing more than junk mail. According to the New York Times (Nov. 19), Broward County discarded 77% of military ballots (304 of 396). In Dade County, only 3 ballots out of 110 were accepted, but 39 felons were allowed to cast counted votes. (Robert Novak, CNN Nov. 18)

"This affront to men and women in uniform, some of whom may have voted for candidates in other close races, marks a new low in an increasingly disreputable campaign. Regardless of his own self-interest, the Vice President should be defending the rights of military voters, instead of disenfranchising them.

"In heavily-Democratic counties, Gore operatives have demanded the acceptance of questionable votes on the slightest pretext. Some officials have "divined" and counted "dimpled chads," sometimes on cards punched only for candidates running for other offices.

"By contrast, as many as 1,400 absentee ballots reportedly have been thrown out for flimsy, inconsequential reasons – sometimes without the envelope being opened. This is a double standard, reportedly incited by "talking points" issued to lawyers associated with the Gore campaign. The attempt to disqualify valid absentee votes, most of which are from servicemen and women, is disgraceful and unworthy of a man who aspires to become Commander in Chief.

"According to Navy Capt. E.M. DuCom, the Deputy Director of the Military Post Service, time constraints on military mail sometimes makes it impossible to apply external postmarks. (MSNBC, Nov. 18) Surely, voters serving at remote outposts or on Navy ships sailing far from conventional post offices are entitled to fair consideration of their signed ballots, commensurate with the sacrifices they are making to defend America. Military ballots are not junk mail.

"Not since 1992, when newly elected President Bill Clinton announced his intention to encourage homosexuality in the military, have we seen such an affront to men and women who are serving their country in uniform. Instead of showing support for the troops, Al Gore is showing contempt for them.

"Every effort must be made to identify and count military votes that were properly executed and signed on or before Election Day. If this is not done, and Al Gore succeeds in his ruthless attempt to 'win' the presidency, soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines may have no alternative but to cast their next vote with their feet."

The Center for Military Readiness (CMR) is an independent 501(c)(3) public policy organization that specializes in military issues.

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For the past twelve days, Vice President Al Gore has been conducting a shameless campaign to steal the presidential election by means of obviously suspect manual recounts.Now the vice president is allowing military voters serving overseas to be denied, through no fault...
Military,Ballots,Are,Not,Junk,Mail
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2000-00-19
Sunday, 19 November 2000 12:00 AM
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