Showing posts with label voting rights. Show all posts
Showing posts with label voting rights. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Imagine what it would be like if....

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
May 11, 2022

My parents were first generation American and I paid attention to elections because that's how they raised me. My Mom brought me with her for everyone of them, including local elections until I was old enough to vote.

By then, I understood what a political platform was, because that was how they used to vote. Then when politicians proved they couldn't be trusted to keep to what they claimed they valued, they switched to being issue voters.

They didn't have the luxury of looking up voting records because no one had computers back then. The only thing they could do was pay attention to newspapers, and they did with dedication.

That was what I believed and still do. Elections matter and so does the platform of political parties.

I've been thinking about what a mess this country is in, and has been for a very long time. Thinking about how hard our lives are right now, reminds me of how hard they were in the past as well.

I got depressed about all of this and then I started to wonder about what it would be like if things had been different.

Imagine what it would be like if,
When the GOP had the chance do the right thing and allow Obama to nominate;who he wanted to to Supreme Court. McConnell decided he didn't care there were months left to his term and would not hold a confirmation hearing. If Obama was allowed, as all other presidents, then we wouldn't have Neil Gorsuch. If McConnell had been speaking truth about what was right and wrong, then we wouldn't have Amy Coney Barrett taking her seat weeks before the election. There isn't much that should surprise us about what happened with the rights of women to control their own bodies being obliterated. After all, that has been the Republican platform for a long time.

Imagine what it would be like if,
When the Republicans had control over the House, Senate and White House, didn't give millions away to rich people with their take cuts. It was $1.5 Trillion but for other than the sales job they delivered, not much went to us. A lot of people didn't pay much attention to it because the economy was pretty good when they took control. That bottomed out fast. What if they invested that money into what would make our lives better instead? We'll never know because none of them tried. Would we be facing all this when corporations and the rich are racking in huge sums of money? Have you read about what the gas companies are making right now while we're trying to figure out how to pay for gas and everything else?

Imagine what it would be like if,
Republicans in the House and Senate cared about the truth or honored their oath of office the first time Trump was Impeached by the majority of the House, but the Senate didn't care about a silly thing called evidence. They wouldn't even listen to any of it and that Impeachment was about what Trump did to Ukraine, withholding money that was supposed to be provided to them for their defense. Hey least we could do considering they gave up their nukes and were worried Russia still had them. What if they got that money and then proved to Russia that the US kept their word? Would we be seeing what is going on over there now? Any of it? 

I could sit her all day and list all the things that all of us should imagine and still not mention every one of them. There are just too many including the pandemic we're still suffering from. 

Anyway, the point to this is, if you can imagine what things could have been like if we didn't give our power away by not voting since some of us think they're all bad, or our votes won't really matter, that is how we got into these messes in the first place.

If you don't pay attention and respect your own place in our history, then we will end up getting more of the same out of those who take the seats of power. 

There is another thing besides what the platform is, and it is called a plank. I think it may be time for all of us to get the ones causing all the problems to walk the plank and stop letting them sink this ship! None of what has happened would have happened if they actually imagined how much damage they would cause and if they did, then why on earth would we give them a chance to do ever worse?

Considering what they've done to delude the public into thinking the election was stolen for the presidency, but their elections were all valid, that should have clued all of in on what this has all been about. Vote as if your future depends on it, because as we've seen, it does.

Friday, December 17, 2021

Voting, "one of the most solemn trusts in human society"

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
December 17, 2021 

Right now the biggest danger to this nation is not what other nations can do to us, but what we can do to ourselves. The voice we have is our vote and what some politicians are doing is the equivalent of putting a muzzle on all of us. 

"Let each citizen remember at the moment he is offering his vote that he is not making a present or a compliment to please an individual - or at least that he ought not so to do; but that he is executing one of the most solemn trusts in human society for which he is accountable to God and his country." Samuel Adams

Some voters are deluded enough to not see that all votes are in jeopardy. All they want to see, all they want to know is, the vote of the "others" are being removed. They fail to see that their own votes are in peril.

If anyone has the right to disallow, remove or overturn the voice of the voters, then no one running for office is safe. Even if they do the will of those with the power to overrule votes, there is nothing to prevent themselves from becoming a target later on when someone else shows up, and those in power want to hand over that seat to them.

It is time for wisdom to defeat ignorance. This is something the Founding Fathers tried to imagine happening and they sought out ways to avoid it.
The connection between Jay’s day and ours is clear: “In our age,” Roberts wrote, “when social media can instantly spread rumor and false information on a grand scale,” there is even greater danger that political passions can turn us against one another, or against constitutional government itself. He emphasized judges’ particular role as “a key source of national unity and stability,” but his deeper point was that those values are needed among more than just judges.

His letter invoked Jay, Hamilton, Madison, and John Marshall, but his ideas called to mind another Founding Father: Benjamin Franklin, who, on leaving the constitutional convention of 1787, supposedly told a curious passerby that the Framers had produced “a republic, if you can keep it.” (The Atlantic)
New Hampshire Senator Maggie Hassan spoke about the need to secure our votes yesterday.

The truth is, men and women have been putting their lives on the line to defend this right to determine the direction of this country, before there even was a country. They fought the best military in the world and defeated it so the people could decide the leaders. That right has been defended over and over again because men and women valued it more than their own lives.

Now we see that the perception of military members being Republican, no longer applies.
In August, Military Times released its annual poll of service members, one of the only political pulse readings conducted of those actively serving. The poll found that support for Trump among the 1,018 active duty troops surveyed had fallen to 38 percent in 2020 from 46 percent in 2017. Of those respondents in the August poll, 41 percent said they were voting for Biden; 37 percent said they planned to vote for Trump; 13 percent would seek a third-party candidate and 9 percent said they did not plan on voting. “Donald Trump’s numbers are beyond dismal in the military, especially for a Republican,” said Jon Soltz, an Army veteran who deployed to Iraq twice and founded the 700,000-member VoteVets, a progressive-leaning veterans’ political advocacy organization. “The idea that veterans and the military are heavily Republican is just not true anymore.” (McClatchy)

Republican voters seen to think it is hitting Democrats. Democrat voters seem to think the same thing. The truth is, more voters are Independents and our votes are being threatened as well. This is from PEW

If we, as Independents, do not fight for all voters, no matter which party they claim, as well as, we who have no party loyalty but true loyalty to this nation we love, then we have failed all those who came before us.

Sunday, July 25, 2021

It is up to all of us to keep them from trying to steal further elections!

Kathie Costos
July 25, 2021

When we listen to reporters talking about the election they don't seem to get it. How could they miss the biggest part of all these allegations over the right for people to vote in this country? This was a stolen election! Not the one from 2020 because Trump lost that one over and over again, as you'll read below, but this was the beginning of stealing elections to come.

Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as they push barricades to storm the U.S. Capitol in Washington D.C on Jan. 6, 2021. Demonstrators breeched security and entered the Capitol as Congress debated the a 2020 presidential election Electoral Vote certification. (Photo by ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP via Getty Images) SOURCE: ROBERTO SCHMIDT (KMBC News)
We watched in horror as the US Capitol was attacked by fellow Americans screaming about "stopping the steal" when they were in fact attempting to do exactly that. They didn't like the results, so they tried to stop it from being accepted by Congress.

Trump set the stage for all of this by claiming if he lost, it meant the election was stolen. That was all he had to do to set things in motion.

Fact Check took a look at the claims made by the previous president. Point by point, they showed how the claims were false. 

Courts rejected the claims of a stolen election.

Fact check: Courts have dismissed multiple lawsuits of alleged electoral fraud presented by Trump campaign
In the early morning of Jan. 7, hours after Trump supporters stormed the Capitol, the U.S. Congress certified enough Electoral College votes for President Biden to declare him winner of the election ( here ).  

As reported by Reuters here , state and federal judges - some appointed by Trump - dismissed more than 50 lawsuits brought by Trump or his allies alleging election fraud and other irregularities.
So many claims were made about absentee ballots it was impossible to keep track of. What was missed, among many, was they were also claiming military votes were stolen because Trump couldn't believe so many members of the military were not supporting him. Facts proved he was wrong, no matter what his ego would not allow him to even contemplate.

Members of the military rely on absentee voting
According to the Federal Voting Assistance Program's 2018 post-election report to Congress, the Defense Department sent 655,409 absentee ballots to personnel serving abroad, and more than half, or 344,392, were returned, a rate comparable to the overall percentage of Americans who voted in the midterm elections.
Georgia military votes were not stolen but over and over again, he and his supporters, pushed that rumor with no evidence to prove anything they claimed. Over and over again, in each state, they attacked mail in ballots during a pandemic setting the stage for all other elections to be jeopardized.

There are members of the Senate who refused to see that Republicans Senators will never support voter integrity legislation to protect the rights of voters when they can easily take over the results. 

There was a time when people wanted their votes to be earned by politicians. After all, the funds they spend come from what taxpayers pay for. Now they want to use our tax dollars to prevent us from using our voice to vote for who we believe will do the best job for us.

Now in state after state, they are passing laws that will take away our voice by vote, using rumors started by Trump and his supporters to cover up for what they wanted to do all along. It doesn't matter how many citizens served in the military to protect and defend the Constitution, including the right to vote, as long as they win. 

It was appalling to hear people were pleased the Capitol was attacked. It is appalling to hear the lies about what we saw with our own eyes. It is repulsive to know so many of our elected officials are standing in the way of holding people accountable for all of this. If they stand in the way, we need to wonder if it is because they were part of all of this and do not want their participation proven. The innocent would want the evidence to come out to prove they were wrongly accused. The guilty want to prevent evidence from proving their guilt!

It is time for members of the Senate to remove the obstacle of the filibuster and defend the rights so many generations of American fought for.

Editorial: Senate Republicans won’t even consider voting rights. The filibuster must go
"...Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said that Democrats were aiming to “tilt every election in America permanently in their favor.” That was an unfair, even outrageous, characterization of the Democrats’ proposal, the ambitious For the People Act, not to mention an exercise in projection.

The For the People Act in its Senate and House versions was arguably too large and complicated a piece of legislation, stitching together a multitude of proposals including disclosure requirement for political contributions, public financing of congressional elections and even an ethics code for the Supreme Court."
The 19th Amendment was hard fought for to allow women the right to vote. This was when elected officials fought to expand voting rights, not prevent them! Notice how many "Red" States were among the first to do it?
Between 1910 and 1918, the Alaska Territory, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New York, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota and Washington extended voting rights to women.

Also during this time, through the Equality League of Self-Supporting Women (later, the Women’s Political Union), Stanton’s daughter Harriot Stanton Blatch introduced parades, pickets and marches as means of calling attention to the cause. These tactics succeeded in raising awareness and led to unrest in Washington, D.C.

Did you know? Wyoming, the first state to grant voting rights to women, was also the first state to elect a female governor. Nellie Tayloe Ross (1876-1977) was elected governor of the Equality State—Wyoming's official nickname—in 1924. And from 1933 to 1953, she served as the first woman director of the U.S. Mint.
The article goes on to point out how long this was fought for.
In 1918, President Wilson switched his stand on women’s voting rights from objection to support through the influence of Catt, who had a less-combative style than Paul. Wilson also tied the proposed suffrage amendment to America’s involvement in World War I and the increased role women had played in the war efforts.

When the amendment came up for vote, Wilson addressed the Senate in favor of suffrage. As reported in The New York Times on October 1, 1918, Wilson said, “I regard the extension of suffrage to women as vitally essential to the successful prosecution of the great war of humanity in which we are engaged.”
The Bill failed in the Senate by 2 votes.

Rep. James Mann brought it up again. This time, it passed.
On May 21, 1919, U.S. Representative James R. Mann, a Republican from Illinois and chairman of the Suffrage Committee, proposed the House resolution to approve the Susan Anthony Amendment granting women the right to vote. The measure passed the House 304 to 89—a full 42 votes above the required two-thirds majority.

Two weeks later, on June 4, 1919, the U.S. Senate passed the 19th Amendment by two votes over its two-thirds required majority, 56-25. The amendment was then sent to the states for ratification.

How could we have gone from elected officials fighting for the rights of citizens to vote, into what we have now when so many of them are fighting to take away the right to vote? It is up to all of us to keep them from trying to steal further elections!

Friday, December 11, 2020

106 members of the House want to toss out veterans votes!

Georgia 616,527
Michigan 520,129
Wisconsin, 315,574
Pennsylvania 710,375

You risked your lives to defend this country and now these 106 members of congress's are trying to take away your votes!
Are they calling their own election illigetimate too?
How does this make you feel?
What are you going to do about it?


All 50 states have officially certified the results of the 2020 presidential election as of this week, reaffirming what has been known for over a month now: Joe Biden will be the next president of the United States.

And yet, on Thursday, 106 Republican members of Congress signed an amicus brief asking the Supreme Court to allow the state of Texas to file a lawsuit that seeks to invalidate the election results in the states of Georgia, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania, all of which President Donald Trump lost.

Rep. Bradley Byrne of Alabama’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama’s 5th Congressional District
Rep. Gary Palmer of Alabama’s 6th Congressional District
Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona’s 5th Congressional District
Rep. Debbie Lesko of Arizona’s 8th Congressional District
Rep. Rick Crawford of Arkansas’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Bruce Westerman of Arkansas’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Doug LaMalfa of California’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Tom McClintock of California’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Ken Calvert of California’s 42nd Congressional District
Rep. Ken Buck of Colorado’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Doug Lamborn of Colorado’s 5th Congressional District
Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Neal P. Dunn of Florida’s 2nd Congressional District
Rep. Ted S. Yoho of Florida’s 3rd Congressional District
Rep. John Rutherford of Florida’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Michael Waltz of Florida’s 6th Congressional District
Rep. Daniel Webster of Florida’s 11th Congressional District
Rep. Gus Bilirakis of Florida’s 12th Congressional District
Rep. Ross Spano of Florida’s 15th Congressional District
Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart of Florida’s 25th Congressional District
Rep. Earl L. “Buddy” Carter of Georgia’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Drew Ferguson of Georgia’s 3rd Congressional District
Rep. Austin Scott of Georgia’s 8th Congressional District
Rep. Rick W. Allen of Georgia’s 12th Congressional District
Rep. Russ Fulcher of Idaho’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Mike Simpson of Idaho’s 2nd Congressional District
Rep. Mike Bost of Illinois’s 12th Congressional District
Rep. Darin LaHood of Illinois’s 18th Congressional District
Rep. Jim Banks of Indiana’s 3rd Congressional District
Rep. James R. Baird of Indiana’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Trey Hollingsworth of Indiana’s 9th Congressional District
Rep. Steve King of Iowa’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Roger Marshall of Kansas’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Ron Estes of Kansas’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Clay Higgins of Louisiana’s 3rd Congressional District
Rep. Mike Johnson of Louisiana’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Ralph Abraham of Louisiana’s 5th Congressional District
Rep. Andy Harris of Maryland’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Jack Bergman of Michigan’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Bill Huizenga of Michigan’s 2nd Congressional District
Rep. John Moolenaar of Michigan’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Tim Walberg of Michigan’s 7th Congressional District
Rep. Tom Emmer of Minnesota’s 6th Congressional District
Rep. Trent Kelly of Mississippi’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Michael Guest of Mississippi’s 3rd Congressional District
Rep. Ann Wagner of Missouri’s 2nd Congressional District
Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer of Missouri’s 3rd Congressional District
#50 - Rep. Vicky Hartzler of Missouri’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Sam Graves of Missouri’s 6th Congressional District
Rep. Jason Smith of Missouri’s 8th Congressional District
Rep. Greg Gianforte of Montana’s at-large congressional district
Rep. Adrian Smith of Nebraska’s 3rd Congressional District
Rep. Lee Zeldin of New York’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Elise Stefanik of New York’s 21st Congressional District
Rep. Gregory Murphy of North Carolina’s 3rd Congressional District
Rep. Virginia Foxx of North Carolina’s 5th Congressional District
Rep. Dan Bishop of North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District
Rep. David Rouzer of North Carolina’s 7th Congressional District
Rep. Richard Hudson of North Carolina’s 8th Congressional District
Rep. Ted Budd of North Carolina’s 13th Congressional District
Rep. Jeff Fortenberry of Nebraska’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Brad Wenstrup of Ohio’s 2nd Congressional District
Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Robert E. Latta of Ohio’s 5th Congressional District
Rep. Bill Johnson of Ohio’s 6th Congressional District
Rep. Bob Gibbs of Ohio’s 7th Congressional District
Rep. Kevin Hern of Oklahoma’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Markwayne Mullin of Oklahoma’s 2nd Congressional District
Rep. Dan Meuser of Pennsylvania’s 9th Congressional District
Rep. Scott Perry of Pennsylvania’s 10th Congressional District
Rep. Fred Keller of Pennsylvania’s 12th Congressional District
Rep. John Joyce of Pennsylvania’s 13th Congressional District
Rep. Guy Reschenthaler of Pennsylvania’s 14th Congressional District
Rep. Glenn Thompson of Pennsylvania’s 15th Congressional District
Rep. Mike Kelly of Pennsylvania’s 16th Congressional District
Rep. Tim Burchett of Tennessee’s 2nd Congressional District
Rep. Chuck Fleischmann of Tennessee's 3rd Congressional District
Rep. John Rose of Tennessee’s 6th Congressional District
Rep. Mark Green of Tennessee’s 7th Congressional District
Rep. David Kustoff of Tennessee’s 8th Congressional District
Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Dan Crenshaw of Texas’s 2nd Congressional District
Rep. Lance Gooden of Texas’s 5th Congressional District
Rep. Ron Wright of Texas’s 6th Congressional District
Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas’s 8th Congressional District
Rep. Mike Conaway of Texas’s 11th Congressional District
Rep. Randy Weber of Texas’s 14th Congressional District
Rep. Bill Flores of Texas’s 17th Congressional District
Rep. Kenny Marchant of Texas’s 24th Congressional District
Rep. Roger Williams of Texas’s 25th Congressional District
Rep. Michael C. Burgess of Texas’s 26th Congressional District
Rep. Michael Cloud of Texas’s 27th Congressional District
Rep. Joe Wilson of South Carolina’s 2nd Congressional District
Rep. Jeff Duncan of South Carolina’s 3rd Congressional District
Rep. William Timmons of South Carolina’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Ralph Norman of South Carolina’s 5th Congressional District
Rep. Tom Rice of South Carolina’s 7th Congressional District
#100 - Rep. Rob Wittman of Virginia’s 1st Congressional District
Rep. Ben Cline of Virginia’s 6th Congressional District
Rep. Dan Newhouse of Washington’s 4th Congressional District
Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington’s 5th Congressional District
Rep. Alex X. Mooney of West Virginia’s 2nd Congressional District
Rep. Carol D. Miller of West Virginia’s 3rd Congressional District
#106 - Rep. Tom Tiffany of Wisconsin’s 7th Congressional District

Friday, August 3, 2012

Thousands of Florida ex-felons may not know they can vote

There are a lot of ex-felons in Florida. They did their time for crimes they committed and some of them were arrested after they served in the military but never received the help they needed after war. They think they lost their rights to vote in this state but they haven't.

Thousands of Florida ex-felons may not know they can vote
By Michael Peltier
Fri Aug 3, 2012

(Reuters) - More than 13,000 ex-felons may be eligible to vote in Florida but don't know it because the notices the parole board mailed to them were returned as undeliverable, the American Civil Liberties Union said Wednesday.

The civil rights group raised the concern after analyzing more than 17,000 names of ex-felons who had their voting rights automatically restored by the Florida Parole Commission.

The list was obtained under the state's public records law and included ex-felons whose Restoration of Civil Rights certificates were returned undelivered to the parole commission.

Florida is one of a minority of U.S. states that does not automatically restore civil rights once a felon has completed a sentence.

The certificates were sent between 2007 and March 2011 under a short-lived policy that automatically restored civil rights to nonviolent offenders.

The policy was repealed in March 2011 by Florida Governor Rick Scott and a newly elected Florida Cabinet, which voted to make it more difficult for ex-felons to get their civil rights back.

After reviewing 17,604 names of those who had their rights restored, the ACLU said it found 13,517 who were not registered to vote.
read more here

Friday, October 31, 2008

War, not voting, focus of soldiers in Iraq

A few things bother me with this. The first is, if the military does not know how they vote, then why do they keep saying that the majority vote Republican? Next, the percentage. "In the last federal election, only about 30 percent of overseas military ballots were tallied" which seems really, really low considering they make the claim the military votes Republican. Up until this election, there was the assumption that the vast majority of the US troops overseas were voting Republican but now that I think of it, they really have no way of knowing how anyone voted. All this means is that for all these years we've been told the troops vote GOP, we've been had.

It also makes sense that the bulk of contributions from members of the military have gone to Obama and Paul, not McCain. As you read down, you'll see that one of the complaints the troops have is that McCain has been tied to Bush and they see Bush for what he did to Iraq and to the country. This also shows that the statistical data is right and troops are a reflection of the nation as a whole. They are Democrats and Republicans and Independents along with the minor parties just like the rest of us. The biggest difference is, they the ones risking their lives doing what the nation sent them to do without having the benefit of deciding who takes over next. The soldiers who do want to vote are not getting what they need as fast as they need it to do it. I wonder if they know how badly McCain has done on his votes for when they become veterans?

War, not voting, focus of soldiers in Iraq
Antiquated, flawed process impedes voting for some combat troops

MOSUL, Iraq - Car bombs rather than Obama, making it home rather than McCain dominate the talk among many U.S. soldiers in Iraq's deadliest city during the final countdown to America's presidential election.

Dangers, distance from home and the dawn-to-dark effort in an alien environment push U.S. politics into a corner for many soldiers — especially in combat outposts where television and the Internet are not readily available.

"Regardless of who wins the election, we are going to be here 15 months. And our mission is not going to be fundamentally affected, at least in the short term," said Capt. Justin Davis Harper after returning from a patrol into the northern city of Mosul's most violent zone.

No public voting data
How soldiers in Iraq or anywhere else vote will not be accurately known since government agencies do not make such data public.

"My guess is that the military will continue to vote Republican but less so in that direction because this time there are conflicting impulses at work," said Richard H. Kohn at the University of North Carolina.

McCain, a former Navy pilot and Vietnam War POW, is attractive to service members and "adept at its language," Kohn said. "But at the same time, I detect a disappointment and even anger at the way Bush has managed, ranging from treatment of the wounded to gross errors in waging the war in Iraq."

go here for more

Mentally ill deserve voting rights, advocates say

Mentally ill deserve voting rights, advocates say
Story Highlights
State advocates help those with mental disabilities register, vote

Critics say that allowing outsiders to help could influence votes

All but 11 states have laws limiting voting rights based on competence

Expert says mentally ill have more at stake because they rely on government

RICHMOND, Virginia (AP) -- Clyde Hoy has missed only one election. It was 2002, and the manic depression he had battled for nearly 20 years had taken hold again, landing him in a state psychiatric hospital.

"I wanted to vote, but I felt that I didn't have any right at all," said the 48-year-old. "I asked, and nobody gave me an answer. There wasn't an option."

Advocates are working to change that with a nationwide effort to make sure those with mental disabilities know their rights and exercise them on Election Day.
go here for more

Friday, July 18, 2008

VA still resists voting drives in facilities

VA still resists voting drives in facilities

By Rick Maze - Staff writer
Posted : Friday Jul 18, 2008 15:36:50 EDT

The Department of Veterans Affairs continues to resist efforts by lawmakers to allow voter registration groups access to patients at hospitals and nursing homes.

Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. James Peake said VA will provide information to veterans about voter registration but will not open the doors to outside groups for two reasons: VA is not prepared to judge whether an organization is truly nonpartisan, and involving federal workers in a partisan operation would violate federal law.

“The agency is not in a position to examine the agenda, history and motivations of every organization that may wish to conduct voter registration drives in our facilities,” Peake said in a July 15 letter to three Democratic senators, Daniel Akaka of Hawaii, Dianne Feinstein of California and John Kerry of Massachusetts.
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Thursday, April 10, 2008

Wounded not worth counting their vote?

When the Patriots decided their futures were worth fighting for to remove the foreign rule from their lives, they were looking at serving the nation that would come. America has a rich history of people willing to lay down their lives for this nation. Imagine being wounded doing it and then being told you just lost your right to vote because you were wounded serving your nation. You are in a hospital bed, probably missing limbs you will have to learn to live without for the rest of your life and then know, that wound just cost you your right to voice your wishes for the direction the nation would take by placing a vote for those who will lead it. This is wrong! The VA should be moving heaven and earth to provide all of them the means possible to vote since they were wounded serving this nation!

Veterans Affairs refuses to provide voter registration for wounded vetsJohn Byrne
Published: Thursday April 10, 2008

VA suggests voter registration not held because it's partisan

At a quiet 1999 ceremony in MaComb County, Michigan, a plainspoken former Texas governor delivered a patriotic speech to commemorate Veterans' Day.

But none of the eight veterans interviewed by The New York Times after the ceremony promised George W. Bush their vote.

A new report Thursday reveals that Secretary of Veterans Affairs James Peake told two Democratic senators his department will not help injured veterans register to vote before the 2008 election.

"VA remains opposed to becoming a voter registration agency pursuant to the National Voter Registration Act, as this designation would divert substantial resources from our primary mission," Peake said in an April 8th letter to Sens. Diane Feinstein (D-CA) and John Kerry (D-MA) acquired by Steven Rosenfeld at Alternet.

Peake refers to a 1993 law that allows government departments to engage in voter registration efforts, Rosenfeld says.

What this means is that many injured veterans still in VA hospitals who can't find means to register outside of their facilities will effectively lose their right to vote. Wounded veterans who have moved must re-register at their "new addresses" or file for absentee ballots in order to participate in the presidential and other elections.
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