ALLARD OFFERS BIPARTISAN MILITARY VOTING AMENDMENT TO DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION BILL
Senior Colorado Senator Working to Improve Voting Process for Members of the Armed Services
U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard (R-Colo.) has introduced an amendment to the FY 2009 Defense Authorization Bill that would improve the voting process for members of the U.S. Armed Services.
"For members of our Armed Services, casting your vote includes far too many hoops to jump through," said Allard. "As we did over sixty years ago during WWII, the voting process for deployed military still depends on a single soldier in the field reading a 400 page guide, trying to direct each individual in his unit how to vote under their specific precinct guidelines. Participation in the democratic process should not be more difficult for the men and women who defend our very right to hold free and democratic elections."
In 2006, active duty military voted at a rate of 42 percent lower than the general population. Of those who were able to cast a vote, 20 percent were not even counted.
"These disproportionate participation rates by many of our nation's most dedicated and patriotic citizens are deeply concerning," said Allard. "This is why I am introducing an amendment to quickly fix the most glaring problems of the system. The amendment would eliminate an unnecessary Notary requirement and allow the electronic submission of the Federal Postcard Application for absentee ballot requests."
Allard has worked closely with Colorado's primary election officer, Army veteran and Secretary of State Mike Coffman, in crafting this legislation. Organizations such as Vets for Freedom, The American Legion, National Vietnam and Gulf War Veterans Coalition, the Reserve Officers Association and others have strongly supported Allard's amendment.
Allard has been joined by 27 of his Senate colleagues who have co-sponsored the amendment to make the military voting process more efficient, including Colorado Senator Ken Salazar.