Veterans are strongly backing Mitt Romney, most critically in battleground states like Colorado, Florida, Ohio and Virginia. There are one million veterans in the states of North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia, and 1.6 million in Florida. Maurice Tamman, a Reuters data news editor who has polled on veterans asserted, “It’s no contest.” Despite Obama trumpeting the killing of Osama Bin Laden, veterans know what’s really at stake. Ray Kelley, national legislative director for the Veterans of Foreign Wars, said the reason was Romney’s strong rhetoric and stance: “We’re going to keep a strong national defense. We want to make sure troops have what they want.”
Several NBC/Wall Street Journal/Marist polls conducted from Sept. 9-11 showed Romney well ahead of Obama among veterans in Florida, Ohio and Virginia. In Colorado, a Sept. 16 poll showed both veterans and military families supporting Romney over Obama 53 percent to 39 percent.
Ryan Williams, a spokesman for Romney, said that Romney was far ahead with veterans because of their resistance to the potential defense cuts under the budget sequester Obama has planned, Obama’s foreign policy positions, and the job market under Obama that offers no opportunities for returning veterans.
Harry Prestanski, executive director of Ohio Veterans United, a group of mostly conservative veterans that endorsed Romney in August, said Romney’s promise to postpone historic budget cuts to the Pentagon was the most important issue for the veterans in Ohio, as the state has 100,000 jobs connected to the defense industry.