DOJ Must Do More to Protect Military Voters From Being Disenfranchised

Feb 15, 2011

House Administration Hearing on MOVE Act Demonstrates Need for DOJ to Step Up Efforts to Protect Voting Rights of Military Personnel Serving Overseas

WASHINGTON – After a full committee hearing to evaluate the effectiveness of the MOVE Act in the 2010 elections, Committee on House Administration Chairman Dan Lungren, R-Calif., issued the following statement on the Department of Justice’s failure to ensure strict, uniform compliance to the law:

“Given the immense sacrifice made on our behalf by the brave men and women serving overseas, I find it disturbing that the Department of Justice touted their own success in implementing the MOVE Act when their efforts clearly failed to ensure all military ballots were mailed on time.  In fact, recent data indicates that approximately 20 percent of military personnel serving overseas did not receive the ballots they requested.

“While I believe that there has been some progress since 2008, I know we can do better. In addition to seeking more input from today’s witnesses who worked tirelessly to comply with the law, we plan to have further hearings to examine the failures that transpired in New York and Illinois.   We will also evaluate legislative measures to improve the underlying law so that local jurisdictions are held appropriately accountable.

“We must do everything we can to guarantee that our military personnel have their right to vote upheld, and I plan to work with the Department of Justice to ensure compliance, without equivocation, in future elections.”