Democrats Versus Military Voters: Not the First Time
Last Thursday, Breitbart News' Mike Flynn broke the news that the Obama campaign was suing in the swing state of Ohio to block a law that extends early voting for members of the military for an additional three days. A fierce battle erupted, with Democrats (and a few conservatives) arguing that Obama campaign was simply trying to extend the military's privilege to everyone else. Regardless of the remedy they seek, Flynn points out, they are suing to end an exemption for military voters. It would not be the first time Democrats--who pretend, in their fight against voter ID, to want more ballot access--have tried to stop the military's votes from counting.
In 2008, for example, the State of Virginia (a critical swing state in 2012) had failed to send absentee ballots to members of the military on active duty in time for them to complete the ballots and return them before the election. When the campaign of Republican nominee Sen. John McCain sued to compel the state to count military ballots that had arrived after election day, the State Board of Elections--then run by Democrats, appointed by a Democratic governor--argued, effectively, that it could send absentee ballots to the military a day before the election and still be in compliance with the law. As RedState's Soren Dayton put it:
...the Democratic Chairwoman of the Virginia State Board of Election (appointed by the Democratic National Committee Chair Tim Kaine, in his capacity as Virginia Governor) Jean Cunningham just claimed a legal basis for massively raising the barrier to voting for soldiers at war.
The Department of Justice (then still run by fair-minded appointees of George W. Bush, and not yet part of the Democrats' voter-fraud-and-intimidation-machine) replaced the McCain campaign, which faced problems of legal standing, as plaintiff in the lawsuit. Eventually, the federal court ruled that Virginia had indeed violated federal law--but that the number of missing votes would not have changed the outcome of the election.
Meanwhile, in the swing state of Ohio, Democrats had done everything they could to bring apparently fraudulent voters to the polls in 2008. When early voting began, they took buses and rounded up homeless people--some from as far away as Chicago, allegedly--and brought them to the polls. Then-Ohio secretary of state, Democrat Jennifer Brunner, turned away Republican poll observers, virtually enabling the Democrats' shenanigans to take place.
When Democrats sue to remove an exemption designed to give military voters an equal chance of being counted, they claim they are only acting in the interests of fairness. When Republicans support for voter ID laws--laws supported by large majorities, even among black voters--the left cries "racism," claiming that Republicans want to suppress the vote of those most likely to vote Democrat. It is a sadly typical act of leftist projection--for is is Democrats, not Republicans, trying to make it more difficult for a particular group to vote because that group tends to vote for the opposition.
Since Flynn's story broke, the Romney campaign weighed in to support those facing down the Obama campaign's army of lawyers. "I stand with the fifteen military groups that are defending the rights of military voters, and if I'm entrusted to be the commander-in-chief, I'll work to protect the voting rights of our military, not undermine them," Mitt Romney said.
Yes, counting the ballots of a reliable Republican voting bloc is good for Romney, politically. But it is also in keeping with the measures taken by nearly every state in the Union over the past two years to make voting easier for soldiers, who have done so much to fight for the right of strangers to vote in hostile lands.
Barack Obama, who once claimed he supported gay marriage because of the soldiers "fighting on my behalf," evidently cannot be bothered to defend those same soldiers' right to vote.