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Sunday, September 02, 2012

Should Barack Obama be accountable? Should the military get to vote?

Two big stories - the military being disenfranchised and the Obama interactive online painting.   Painting first...click on the link to see and interact with the painting, which is introduced by the youtube video...




The most amazing painting I have ever seen is found HERE!!!!!



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Obama Lawsuit Could have Disastrous Effects on Military Voting Rights



Why are 15, non-partisan, veterans groups opposing President Obama’s lawsuit against an Ohio law that allows military personnel three extra days to vote before Election Day? The President’s campaign claims he is merely trying to extend voting rights. The reason these military groups - representing hundreds of thousands of veterans - oppose the President is because his claim is just plain false.

Despite what the Obama re-election campaign says in press releases about wanting everyone to have the chance to vote, what they are stating in court – where it counts – could have disastrous consequences for the voting rights of the men and women of our Armed Forces.

It is important to lay out the facts. There are two statutes regarding early voting, both of which were amended recently by the Ohio legislature. The first statute sets the deadline for early voting as the Friday before Election Day, giving most voters 32 days within which to vote early, in-person. The second statute extends in-person absentee voting through Election Day for military personnel, an additional three days of in-person voting.

President Obama’s re-election campaign argues in federal court that giving military personnel these three extra days to cast their in-person absentee ballot is “entirely arbitrary” and has “no legitimate justification" in the law because doing so “treats similarly situated Ohio voters differently.”

If a federal court were to buy into the Obama campaign’s basic argument, that military voters do not deserve any special treatment in voting laws, then it could have disastrous effects on military voting rights, not just in Ohio but everywhere in the country.

If successful, Obama’s legal argument against special voting privileges for members of the military could eviscerate longstanding precedent for military voting rights. And it is why 15 military and veterans organizations have intervened in court seeking to uphold this law. As their brief notes, “The Obama campaign’s and Democratic National Committee’s argument that it is arbitrary and unconstitutional to afford special consideration, flexibility, and accommodations to military voters to make it easier for them to vote in person is not only offensive, but flatly wrong as a matter of law.”

These military groups are exactly right. The Supreme Court has long held that the military is unique, “a specialized community governed by a separate discipline from that of the civilian,” in part because “‘it is the primary business of armies and navies to fight or be ready to fight wars should that occasion arise.’”

For years, federal law has recognized the unique challenges of the military and enacted legislation giving the men and women of our armed services special rules and privileges to ensure that they have every opportunity to cast their ballot. Ohio has simply applied these same constitutional principles to early in-person absentee voting to give military members three extra days to vote before Election Day.

As one federal court put it, “How and where [members of the military] conduct their lives is dictated by the government. The vote is their last vestige of expression and should be provided no matter what their location.”

Not only is the Obama re-election campaign legally wrong, they are factually wrong as well. Obama’s team actually argues in its brief that the recent changes made by the duly elected legislature of Ohio “create two classes of Ohio voters.” First of all, that’s just not true.

Even in 2008, “Ohio law provide[d] separate application processes for different classifications of absentee voters,” i.e. one for a military absentee voter and one for “a ‘regular’ absentee voter.” Of course, no one, including the Obama campaign, had an issue in 2008 with treating military and “regular” voters differently. The only change Ohio enacted was to the deadline for in-person voting. The assertion that Ohio created a new class of voters is just plain false.

Finally, while the Obama re-election campaign is claiming to the media that he wants to extend voting to everyone for the three-day period preceding the election, this lawsuit is unlikely to accomplish that. If the court were to accept his legal argument that military voters deserve no special treatment under the law, the court would be faced with two options: rewrite the statute that cuts off early absentee voting at the Friday before Election Day or strike down the statute that providers three extra days for military personnel.

If the court believes Obama’s argument that military personnel deserve no special treatment, the court is far more likely to strike down the statute granting that right than it is to rewrite an entirely separate statute. Courts do not write statutes; the legislature does.

It is critical that we not allow President Obama’s statements to the media to cloud what exactly he is arguing in court (remember he promised the American people that ObamaCare wasn’t a tax and then had his lawyers argue that it was a tax to the Supreme Court). What Obama’s lawyers are arguing in court is far more important than the spin that his campaign is trying to place on it to the public, and if it goes uncheck, it could severely limit the voting rights of our brave men and women in uniform.

33 comments:

Anonymous said...

What exactly is the justification for giving members of the military those extra 3 days? Why aren't the 32 days that everyone else gets sufficient?

Anonymous said...

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/fact-checker/post/is-obama-challenging-voting-privileges-of-ohio-military-members/2012/08/07/b9cf76ac-e080-11e1-8fc5-a7dcf1fc161d_blog.html

Another take on this issue?


lava

Anonymous whatsit said...

Good article, lava.

"Ohio changed its voting laws after the 2004 election, allowing voters to cast early ballots until the Monday before Election Day — mainly to prevent long lines at polling stations. Obama seems to have benefitted from this during his 2008 presidential run, as many African-American churches drove congregants to the polls after Sunday services.

The state’s Republican-controlled legislature passed a series of voting laws in 2011, bumping the deadline for most residents back to the preceding Friday. But there was a problem: the measures contained conflicting deadlines for military personnel and their families, who benefit from the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voter Act.

Ohio’s secretary of state resolved the matter by clarifying that the previous Monday deadline would still apply to service members. The Democratic plaintiffs contend that this “disparate treatment” of voters is unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. In other words, they think everyone in the state should have the same deadline."

Obama and the Democrats happen to be right on this issue: treating members of the military different in this case is unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.

The solution is very simple:get rid of the law. Members of the military get to vote until Monday. So does everybody else. What's the problem?

radar said...

Because the military has guys scattered all over the world and many of them in hard-to-reach places. When thousands of military votes were thrown out in 2004 and 2008 for arriving too late? That was an insult to the people risking their lives for us!

I know the Obama Administration knows the military will vote against him. He wants to benefit from the obstacles against the troops to have a political advantage. I think it is reprehensible.

WAPO? They spin it into making it about all voters in Ohio (hey, President, that is how you spell it) and so does lava BUT the military has the need for the extra time, everyone else doesn't. The fact that military votes are counted out time after time for arriving late because of the obstacles they have the ordinary folks don't is the point.

I think the WAPO deserves FOUR long noses for ignoring the underlying reason for the need that is specific to the troops. I think it is terrible that the CIC of the troops fights against them.
Pretending that it is a Constitutional issue is reprehensible in itself. Shame on all of you!

Did you guys serve in the military?

radar said...

Naturally Darwinists will be liberals more often than not, will actually believe in AGW more often than not and will be hostile to the military as well. Why am I not surprised?

Anonymous said...

"Should the military get to vote?"

Wow, how deceptive and dishonest of you. I hope the concept of shame means something to you. There is nothing - NOTHING - in any of what is happening here that changes whether members of the military get to vote. Read the article lava linked to.

Let me break this down for you.

1. Original law (approx. 2005 to 2011): Voters can vote early, until the Monday before Election Day. It's a good thing because it reduces long lines at polling stations. Under this law, members of the military get to vote until Monday.

2. Republicans, perhaps because they notice that too many Democrats are now voting, change the law to make the deadline the previous Friday, but due to a conflict with an existing law, military personnel still has until Monday. Under this law, members of the military still get to vote until Monday.

3. Democrats note - rightly so - that this is unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. They want the law removed. In that case members of the military STILL get to vote until Monday.

So the answer to your question - including from everything you can say about the Obama Administration, the Democrats etc. - is a big fat resounding YES, the military should get to vote.

The problem is those pesky other people whose voting rights the Republicans are trying to restrict.

What do you think, should they get to vote?

Anonymous said...

"Because the military has guys scattered all over the world and many of them in hard-to-reach places. When thousands of military votes were thrown out in 2004 and 2008 for arriving too late? That was an insult to the people risking their lives for us!"

What does that have to do with this issue?

"I know the Obama Administration knows the military will vote against him. He wants to benefit from the obstacles against the troops to have a political advantage. I think it is reprehensible. [...] The fact that military votes are counted out time after time for arriving late because of the obstacles they have the ordinary folks don't is the point."

The voting rights of the military are not affected by this issue.

You haven't been paying attention.

The lawsuit isn't what you think it's about.

Anonymous said...

"Pretending that it is a Constitutional issue is reprehensible in itself. Shame on all of you!"

Seriously? You want to cast shame on people who have heard of the Equal Protection Clause? How on Earth do you think it doesn't apply here?

Anonymous said...

"The only change Ohio enacted was to the deadline for in-person voting. The assertion that Ohio created a new class of voters is just plain false."

Other than creating one class of voters with one deadline (Monday) and another class of voters with another deadline (Friday). Apart from that, yep, I guess that assertion would be false. But since that is the case, the assertion happens to be true.

Radar, what's wrong with giving everyone the Monday deadline?

radar said...

If successful, Obama’s legal argument against special voting privileges for members of the military could eviscerate longstanding precedent for military voting rights.

Duh.

radar said...

Legal precedents are established by cases like this. The military needs to have provisions to allow them to vote in absentia because they are scattered around the globe and often stuck in very remote locations. So the idea that this is an equal protection issue is BS of the highest order and it is shameful in the extreme!

If the Obama Administration succeeds in making military voting rights less important and takes away their ability to send in their votes from overseas by pretending that this is an equal protections issue, then the precedent will be used in other states to strip the military of absentee voting rights.

Our military is focused on doing the job and trying to stay alive while doing it. Commanders have the responsibility of doing their jobs and keeping soldiers alive. The job of passing out and collecting votes is farther down the list of priorities when you are constantly alert for rocket attacks, IED and "friendly" militia suddenly turning around and shooting at you.

I have friends over there right now. I served in the military and my family has had someone in service in every generation that I know of. I resent those of you who are able to live peaceful lives because others put their lives on the line for you and then you cowards attack their ability to put in a vote! Yes, this is a cowardly attack by a President who thinks he is above the law. Shame on Barack Obama!

Anonymous said...

Just wondering, Radar: in 2004, did you vote for the decorated war hero or the draft dodger?

radar said...

lava in particular is supposed to know something about law, so he knows all about legal precedents. He knows why Obama is bringing suit against the military here. So do I. Obama knows the military will overwhelmingly vote against them and well they should! The guy is a terrible Commander in Chief who has overseen the change in Afghanistan from a dangerous place we were containing into a deadly place where we are often sitting ducks.

One of my good friends is in an area where the enemy is attacking and killing US troops. He is commanding a unit charged to clear IED from the road. Obama has withdrawn air support from the guys charged with clearing the roads of IED so our soldiers go out there naked in Humvees wide open to rocket attacks. That is the kind of CIC Obama is. So his wife and family and friends know that any day he could be one of those casualties. That is a hard thing to live day by day, especially for his wife and family. He is like another son to me and I would be crushed to hear he has been killed. So far he is winning and his unit is mostly intact. But he and his unit did two tours in Iraq under Bush and never had a death or serous injury. Now, in Afghanistan under Obama they have lost troops. I know how that hurts him, because he feels personally responsible for them all!

Another friend of mine is also in the danger zone. He posts pictures of himself wearing his gear and holding a rifle with a big smile. But I know darned well he has a wife and kids back home. I know darned well the area he is in is very dangerous.

As of August 24th of this year, 1438 American troops have died in Afghanistan under Obama. 575 died during the two terms of the Presidency of George Bush. That means over 71 per cent of the American deaths in Afghanistan belong to Obama.

My son served in Afghanistan. Every day and night I prayed for him to stay alive. It was months of hope and stress. Now I pray for my friends. Meanwhile Obama takes away their air support and attacks their voting rights. So shame on you all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

radar said...

In 2004 the choice was between a man who served his country in the military with honor, George Bush and a man who faked his war record so he appeared to be a hero and yet later turned out to be a turncoat who formed an anti-soldier organization.

George Bush served with honor, he was a jet pilot. John Kerry made movies of himself to appear to be a hero while being disparaged by his fellow servicemen. He then began to charge his former compatriots as war criminals.

http://www.wintersoldier.com/staticpages/index.php?page=VietnamAgain

War hero my butt! Kerry was a shame to the uniform. Since George Bush served he could not be a draft dodger. Now, if you want a draft dodger go look up Clinton, Bill!

radar said...

Now a question for you...I was drafted out of college and into the Army in 1972. I did not run away to Canada despite the fact that I was being pulled away from my hopes and dreams. I was on an athletic and academic scholarship, I had a girlfriend and an original Mustang convertible and a job and was well on my way to a journalism degree. But the Nixon "draft them out of college" law that included a lottery snatched me off of the campus. Yet I still went.

Bill Clinton managed to use his political pull to run away to England to avoid the draft. He was a draft dodger. Did you vote for Bill Clinton? Hmmmm?

radar said...

One last thing. Lyndon Baines Johnson never saw one minute of combat but got himself a medal by using his pull to force a bomber to take a flight out away from the base and fly around for 13 minutes and then set back down. LBJ then applied for and received a medal, the Silver Star. In fact Johnson did nothing to earn anything but derision from real soldiers:

http://www.victoryinstitute.net/blogs/utb/2009/11/raider-johnson-president-and-war-hero/

The crew flew a short mission for the sole purpose of allowing Johnson to apply for a medal for political purposes. LBJ was a joke to the other members of his unit, a paper tiger in a world of real danger.

radar said...

http://www.1stcavmedic.com/bill-clinton-draft.htm

Bill Clinton, fervent draft-dodger.

An attempt to discredit the service of George Bush as not honorable turned out to be fraudulent and completely motivated by politics. Dan Rather staked his career on the faked documents and so hastened the end of Rather's career as the prime-time news anchor he had been.

Typical hypocrisy of liberals to vote for a draft dodger like Bill Clinton, frame Kerry as a war hero and to claim that Bush was a draft dodger when Bush actually served, Bill ran away like a coward and Kerry attacked the military after a shameless self-promotion concerning his military service.

Like I said, Darwinists tend to believe in Anthropic Global Warming, vote for liberals and diminish the military and deny the Christian heritage of the USA. They usually do not serve in the military. Sad subset of society that helped elect the worst President in history in 2008. Ugh.

radar said...

Oh, and Jimmy Carter pardoned the draft dodgers as part of his Presidency, no surprise that yet another Democrat did the wrong thing! Carter has become a caricature as a Cino and has earned the nickname Dhimmi Carter. To my everlasting shame I voted for him in 1976 because I thought a Naval Commander would be a good leader. Turned out the guy was even afraid of attack rabbits!

In my opinion John F Kennedy would now be a Republican rather than sign on for the platform of the Democrats now and probably Bobby would be, too. Bobby was the last Democrat for whom I worked to see get elected and Carter was the last Democrat running for a national office that I voted for. The Democrats left me, I didn't leave them.

I hated the Republicans because Nixon got me drafted and then turned out to be a foul-mouthed coverup artist. When Watergate was starting, he could have just admitted that a bunch of guys associated with him had played political dirty tricks without his knowledge and apologized for what they had done on his behalf. Instead he covered it up and deserved his fate.

But then I saw Jimmy Carter screw up the job so badly that the USA was seen as weak in the eyes of the world. Thank God for Ronald Reagan!!!

Years later Bill Clinton did worse than Nixon and was impeached and yet was allowed to keep serving in the White House! Democrats have abandoned honor and love of country to accrue and cling to power. Very few honorable Democrats left in national politics.

Anonymous said...

lava in particular is supposed to know something about law, so he knows all about legal precedents. He knows why Obama is bringing suit against the military here. So do I.

I don't think you are comprehending the facts of this case and you lack the training to analyze this properly, Radar. A decision in this case would have little to nothing to do with special voting procedures for the military, because it isn't controverted that the government can make these accommodations. The suit isn't seeking to change voting procedures for the military, because that would be a untenable position.

The suit is basically saying there was no rational basis for shortening the early voting period for non-military and the basis of the law that was passed that shortened that time was actually to discourage voting among particular groups. Big difference from what you are alleging.

I don't expect you to get this radar. But hopefully the other readers do.

lava

Anonymous said...

"If successful, Obama’s legal argument against special voting privileges for members of the military could eviscerate longstanding precedent for military voting rights."

Military voting rights are not reduced by the suit, so even as a precedent it won't do any harm. Please pay attention.

"The military needs to have provisions to allow them to vote in absentia because they are scattered around the globe and often stuck in very remote locations."

This case is not about absentee voting, it's about early voting in the state.

"So the idea that this is an equal protection issue is BS of the highest order and it is shameful in the extreme!"

It is not BS, it's plain and obvious: one group of citizens in the state can vote until Monday, another group in the same state can only vote until the preceding Friday. It's plainly unconstitutional according to the Equal Protection clause. There is no reason not to have them all vote until Monday.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said: It's plainly unconstitutional according to the Equal Protection clause.

Not necessarily. The government isn't discriminating against a protected class of people in this case, so they just need a rational basis for treating these two groups separately. Its very rare for a law to be stuck down on eq protection when we aren't talking about a protected class (race, national origin, sex,...).

lava

Anonymous said...

What would be the rational basis for not giving everyone until Monday to vote? I believe part of the case is that predominantly African-American voters are affected by this disparate regulation.

Anonymous said...

"In my opinion John F Kennedy would now be a Republican"

On account of what policies?

And what would today's Republicans say to Reagan if he came along now? Would they let him raise taxes?

Anonymous said...

"Bill Clinton managed to use his political pull to run away to England to avoid the draft. He was a draft dodger. Did you vote for Bill Clinton? Hmmmm?"

Since I'm not an American citizen: no.

But I love the way you can make George Bush a hero and John Kerry a man who 'faked his war record'. Wonder if you'd say the same if Kerry was a Republican and Bush a Democrat.

So I guess this year it will be a vote for the Mormon?

Chaos Engineer said...

Just to bring everybody up-to-speed, there was a court decision last week, and the judge ruled that the early-voting period for civilians should be put back where it was before. The early-voting period for servicemembers was unchanged. This is what the Obama administration had actually wanted. Here's a link: Judge Sides With Obama On Ohio Early Voting Suit Despite Romney Attacks

(Mike Dewine, the state's Republican Attorney General, has announced that he's going to appeal the decision, so it's still theoretically possible that a higher court will make it harder to servicemembers to vote.)



Now, a cynic would say that Obama's motives weren't entirely pure: A longer early-voting period makes it easier for the elderly and the sick and the poor to vote, and they're more likely to support Obama. If he had a choice between early voting for everybody or early voting for nobody, then it would be in his best interest to allow everybody to vote.

So why do people believe that Obama wants to make it harder for anyone to vote? That belief isn't supported by Obama's public statements, or by his court filings, or by the court's decision, or even by basic common sense. All we've got is this:

I know the Obama Administration knows the military will vote against him. He wants to benefit from the obstacles against the troops to have a political advantage.

How do you "know" that this is his goal?

Somehow I'm reminded of that bit from the convention last week, where Clint Eastwood was screaming at a chair with an invisible Obama in it.

In order to have a working two-party system, we need to have people who oppose Obama's real policies. Instead we've just got people who just come up with these bizarre fantasies and pretend that Obama believes in them, in order to justify their hatred of him. It's sad.

Chaos Engineer said...

Quick update - I was reading through the judge's decision, at the link I posted before. It actually makes it easier for servicemembers to vote.

Before the ruling, servicemembers had the right to in-person voting on the weekend before election day, but there was a loophole: The county election boards weren't required to have any polling locations open on the weekend. The decision instructs the Ohio Secretary of State to fix this.

I'm always amazed at how much stuff you can learn just by reading.

radar said...

Chaos occasionally makes sense so I will look into that.

Meanwhile for the idiots who think George Bush (who served in the military and was a fighter pilot) was a draft dodger and John Kerry a war hero? Below:

John Kerry's bizzare military career and anti-American activities thereafter:
http://www.wintersoldier.com/index.php

BTW the man who introduced Kerry at the 2004 Democratic Convention was stripped of his Silver Star and sentenced to 37 months in Federal Pen for child pornography.
http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2011/07/navy-wade-sanders-silver-star-revoked-072711w/

Would further research take Kerry's medals, too?

Bill Clinton's series of lies to avoid military service?
http://www.1stcavmedic.com/bill-clinton-draft.htm

Anonymous whatsit said...

"Chaos occasionally makes sense so I will look into that."

It's pretty much what previous commenters already said. Your claim that Obama's trying to make it in any way difficult for members of the military to vote is complete nonsense, and fully exposed as such.

Anonymous said...

"Meanwhile for the idiots who think George Bush (who served in the military and was a fighter pilot) was a draft dodger and John Kerry a war hero?"

Remind us, which one faced the enemy directly multiple times and which one stayed back home?

Anonymous said...

"BTW the man who introduced Kerry at the 2004 Democratic Convention was stripped of his Silver Star and sentenced to 37 months in Federal Pen for child pornography.
http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2011/07/navy-wade-sanders-silver-star-revoked-072711w/

Would further research take Kerry's medals, too?"

Are you trying to hint that Kerry dabbles in child pornography now?

The modern right-winger, ladies and gentlemen. Truly without shame.

radar said...

You know, I am a veteran and I served so I can say my piece, I earned it. I earned it when some of you were running off to Canada and some of you were running away to other things like Bill Clinton did. Most of the rest of you are too young to know what the heck you are talking about.

John F. Kennedy issued a Presidential order to get American troops out of Vietnam, but he was killed and LBJ cancelled it. LBJ turned the war into a joke because he didn't know what the heck he was doing. We needed to either get out or win. When Kerry left Vietnam after four months he soon began charging his fellow soldiers with faked war crimes. In fact, he was more likely to have done them himself. He helped divide the country and make Vietnam unwinnable. So I detest the guy.


I make these statements:

One of the few guys who served with Kerry who did not join the Swift Boat team was the guy who was stripped of his medals and sent to prison for child pornography. That was the guy Kerry picked to present him in the Democratic convention. True.

Kerry's top commander, Admiral Zumwalt considered Kerry's service record to be a hindrance to future political endeavors and he was right.

Most of his fellow Swift-Boaters opposed his candidacy and declared that his medals were not earned and that Kerry was a traitor for joining with the anti-war group charging soldiers with war crimes. Kerry's testimony was excoriated by his peers and many of the "soldiers" who testified with him were not even in the military or did not serve in Vietnam. True.

Therefore people who served with Kerry considered his conduct in Vietnam shameful and his conduct thereafter as shameful and the one guy Kerry picked to present him at the Convention turned out to be a guy who faked his medal claims and was sent to the Federal Pen for child pornography. That does not mean Kerry is into child pornography. But it means most military guys are not proud to be associated with him.

George Bush served in the military honorably. Kerry's service and subsequent actions are questionable. Bill Clinton lied and lied some more and used his political pull to run away from service. Which one do you think I would rather support?

Anonymous said...

So cue the 2012 Democratic convention as the delegates booed the idea of "God" and "Israel" when they were asked to vote to return them to the Democratic platform. Three voice votes seemed to be about half "NO" but the chair decided to put them in anyway because of the shame of leaving them out.

Cue the typical liberal.

Anonymous said...

"George Bush served in the military honorably. Kerry's service and subsequent actions are questionable."

Remind us, which one faced the enemy directly multiple times and which one stayed back home?