Thursday, March 7, 2013

'Our' American Military: 'We' are Leaving them behind

When we sit back and 'not' take action for those that serve our country in the Armed Forces than we are just as guilty of leaving our men/women behind...  

As if those that fight for us to'keep' that one very 'important' right we have, the right to vote, did the same and left one of theirs behind.  

The only difference is, those that protect this basic right for us civilians, 'would' die so as 'not' to leave even 'one' of theirs behind.

Those that wear these boots, deserve better.

We 'must' do 'our' Part

I had been writing about my dog/best friend Bugg, recipes of all sorts, mine and my brother's illnesses and our life growing up with an alcoholic dad.  The last thing most (at the site I 'was' writing on) thought that would come out of me was anything political.

Yes maybe in a comment geared towards a fellow writer on a article they had written but, me, this nice southern lady and from Alabama of all places, could not go and do something that would take some kind of intelligence to get it done.  I proved those at this site wrong, when I actually exposed Barry & Co. as the liars they are with only facts, not MSM (not even Fox News folks:) but, by using government documents and this administration's own pie holes.

I had an election to try and win for our country and my fellow citizens, I had so much material to expose (didn't even get a iota out) and so little time.  I honestly thought I was doing my job and then one morning while watching Varney & Co. on Fox Business Net Work.  One of his guest Eric Eversole's (Exec. of Military Voter Protection Project) comments on how hard it was for those in the Armed Forces and their spouses overseas were able to vote and how few ballots even counted once received in the U.S., it just smacked me in the face.

I mean, how could I even live with myself if I was going to be able to go out my door, down the street and vote while those that keep that right for me and others across this world, might not be able too vote.  I halted the political bashing of this inept administration to put out a important (to me, should be to you also) article so maybe it might hit just one person not knowing how to get ballot, to be able to get a ballot.  I don't know if my article helped one person but, at least I did try.

This was the problem...

I didn't publish this article until October 6, 2012.  Just imagine if I and others like me (that write on line) had also posted a road map for those that serve in many capacities for the Untied States of America overseas months before, we might have actually of made a difference, or not.  At least we could say we did something about it, right?

I was born in a group that picked me and I have always been so grateful that it did, Air Force brat.  I was born in the United States, only to be landing in Okinawa by the time I was 6 months old, back in 1964.  I have met a lot of good people throughout my life that have, are or will serve our country in the Armed Forces.

I have the up most respect for their courage to do what I would not be able to do myself, I admit it.  I am so grateful for all that these men and women have, do and will do for our country.


One man that touched my heart very deeply was my father-in-law Gene (USMC tyvm) and as you can see, he holds the tallest platform in my home and rightly so.  Gene served through WWII, pacific arena, with me having lived in Guam (72-77) that made it so we had a connection that most in the family did not.  As I was doing my research for my latest 'attack' this administration article and as I sat in my living room I looked up, so as to ask Gene what do I do to save this country you loved.

Then I noticed the only photograph I have of my father-in-law in uniform, the photograph and frame has seen some wear, as the picture was melded to the glass.  I have no idea how to fix it and I feel so ashamed that I am allowing one of my hero's to be displayed like this.  Then I looked at his eyes and remembering what Eric Eversole had to say that morning and this is what I thought...

As ashamed as I was over this photograph, it did not match the shame I felt that I was 'not' doing all I could to help 'his' brothers and sisters in arms.  I started to put my article together that night, I could feel Gene looking down from heaven, my way and giving me an 'atta' girl, with each word I typed.

They Too 'serve' Kind of

I will not forget about the families of our Armed Forces either, they too serve to a point.  Mama toted kids around this country and overseas as Dad served twenty one years in the United States Air Force, she too deserved this basic right of ours, as does many others.

I saw Mama and other wives do courageous things, admirable things and still be there to tuck us kids in at night, all for their country.

These military spouses gave during times of war and no pay was sent their way.  The times we lived overseas were from 1964-1968 (Okinawa) and during the years of 1971-1977 (Guam) were not always fun in the sun.

I feel those that support (husband/wives/kids) those that fight for us, should be given the right to cast their vote for those that will have a say in our government, it be local or federal.

I know being a young girl living in Guam when 'The Fall of Saigon' happened in 1975, it affected us kids and adults, as this little island we all made home was over crowded, in a instance it seems.  I saw as 'every' man, women and at times child did all we could to help others to gain their  freedom, even though some passed away, a lot did make it to feel freedom for the first time..

At the age of eleven years old, my world and my mindset on life changed after one moment in time.  When a a South Vietnamese woman thanked me for saving her and her family.  I did say 'after' that one moment, why me?  It had taken a bit for it all to sink in, I went home and contemplated it for awhile. 

Why me, why did she thank me, kept running through my head.  I then got it, it was because she was thanking my country and those that did the work to give her the chance of having freedom for the first time in her life.  I was so proud of those that wore uniforms that day, those I never really paid attention to coming and going for years, I then got it.  I also have so much admiration for those that stood by them (the wives of those living on Base, including Mama) during these hard times in our lives and it has not changed to this day.

We are 'not' on the front lines 'by no means' but at times, we do see more than most.  Do the families deserve the right to vote, they do tag along, I feel they have earned it, do you? 

They Can 'not' do it All

Those of us that live/lived around any military installation will know it takes more than just our troops to keep things rolling.  Our troops are trained to fight and crabgrass is not their enemy.  So we do need those that will take these jobs, so our troops will be able to do their job.

These men and women do many jobs and those that serve know just how valuable they are, do you?

We also have embassies around the world and they too must be staffed with non-military citizens, I feel they also do their part for their country and deserve to be able to cast their ballots on election day.

These people that help keep the American government around the world functioning also deserve the right to be able to vote.

Pelosi at 'her' best, Sadly

Pin the tail on Pelosi
Of course after listening to what Eric Eversole had to say on Varney & Co., I had to do my research on what was behind this MOVE Act 'finally' passed by 'both' houses and signed into law by the President in 2009.

Did I start right at that bill, of course not, I always like to know where something starts, to understand the process and reasoning of why it was done in the first place.  We needed to revamp our system, in a nutshell but, it would take jumping a few hurdles, to get the job done.

The Military Voting Protection act (S.3073.IS 2008) was introduced on the senate floor and passed, unanimously May 22, 2008.  

Then the bill was passed to those on Speaker Pelosi's watch and this is the path it had taken in '2008'...

5/22/2008: Sponsor introductory remarks on measure. (CR S4805)

5/22/2008: Read twice and referred to the Committee on Rules and Administration.

10/1/2008: Senate Committee on Rules and Administration discharged by Unanimous Consent.

10/1/2008: Measure laid before Senate by unanimous consent. (consideration: CR S10394-10396)

10/1/2008: S.AMDT.5690 Amendment SA 5690 proposed by Senator Durbin for Senator Cornyn. (consideration: CR S10394-10396 text: CR S10394-10396) In the nature of a substitute.

10/1/2008: S.AMDT.5690 Amendment SA 5690 agreed to in Senate by Unanimous Consent.

10/1/2008: Passed Senate with an amendment by Unanimous Consent.

10/2/2008: Message on Senate action sent to the House.

10/2/2008 12:11pm: Received in the House.

10/2/2008: Referred to the House Committee on House Administration. 


Why was she not asked about this in 2008: Madame Speaker (Pelosi), why was this bill held up in committee and 'never' brought to the floor for a vote in the house of Representatives?

It did 'finally' Pass in 2009 (now the MOVE act), a coincidence, beats me but, I would not put it past this women to make sure she lessened the republicans voting in 2008, I am just saying

1 in Congress Cares

Jul 28 2010
WASHINGTON — U.S. Senator John Cornyn, R-Texas, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder expressing serious concerns about recent reports on the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) reluctance to enforce the Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment Act (MOVE Act), which requires states to send military voters their unmarked absentee ballots at least 45 days before Election Day.  In the letter, Cornyn states:
The Honorable Eric Holder
Attorney General
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001

Dear Attorney General Holder:

As a co-author of the recently enacted Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment Act (“MOVE Act”), I write to express serious concerns about recent reports on the position and intentions of the Department of Justice (DoJ) regarding specific provisions of this new law. 
The MOVE Act was intended to end the historical disenfranchisement of our military service members.  Now, as this important law is implemented, these brave citizens need your help and your commitment to protecting their enjoyment of the same civil rights they fight to safeguard for their fellow Americans. 
The MOVE Act requires states to mail unmarked absentee ballots to military and overseas voters at least 45 days before an election.  This 45-day standard was statutorily mandated based on extensive Congressional evidence that any shorter period of time significantly burdens military and overseas voting rights.  The bill allows states to apply for a waiver from the 45-day requirement, but only if at least one of three specific situations arises that renders the state “unable” to comply with that timeframe.  The waiver language is very narrow and very clear, just as it was intended to be. 
Unfortunately, according to the minutes of the 2010 Winter meeting of the National Association of Secretaries of State (“NASS”), the Deputy Chief of the Voting Section told state election officials that the legislative language regarding waivers is not completely clear, that the provisions of the law are “fairly general,” that it is “somewhat of an open question as to what type of information” a state must submit to be granted a waiver, that it is unclear whether waivers, once granted, are valid only for one election or permanently, and that litigation to enforce the provisions of the MOVE Act against the states “is always the last resort.”  If these are the positions of the DoJ, then they fly in the face of the clear statutory language, undermine the provisions in question, and jeopardize the voting rights of our men and women in uniform.
The MOVE Act’s text is clear.  A secretary of state may be granted a waiver under 42 U.S.C.S. § 1973ff-1(g) only if the state is “unable” to comply with the law—meaning that the state must literally not be able to comply.  If they are able, states must comply with the MOVE Act. 
The provisions of the law are specific.  There are only three types of “undue hardship” that are an adequate excuse for a state to seek a waiver: (i) The State's primary election date prohibits the State from complying; (ii) The State has suffered a delay in generating ballots due to a legal contest; or (iii) The State Constitution prohibits the State from complying.  If none of these situations exists, then the state may not apply for a waiver, and the federal government may not grant one. 
There is no question as to what type of information is required in a waiver application.  The precise information required is plainly mandated in 42 U.S.C.S. § 1973ff-1(g)(1)(A-D).  It is equally clear that a waiver may be sought only “with respect to an election for federal office”; meaning that a separate waiver must be sought with respect to each election, and that a blanket or permanent waiver is not contemplated by the statutory text. 
The statute does not create any discretion for the Executive Branch to decide whether or not to enforce its legal requirements.  To be in compliance, a state must either mail out the unmarked ballots 45 days before an election or else meet the specific and limited requirements for a waiver.  If a state is not in compliance with the statute, there is little room for “dialogue” or negotiation, and the Voting Section should take immediate steps to enforce the law and safeguard military and overseas voting rights, including pursuing litigation whenever necessary. 
The comments by the DoJ official, as reported in the NASS minutes, appear to ignore Congress’s clear legislative language and could facilitate the disenfranchisement of our men and women in uniform.  In order to clarify the law and protect the rights of the men and women who protect all of our rights, I request that you:
  • Immediately issue guidance to state elections officials, clarifying that: (a) states must comply with the 45-day deadline for mailing ballots, unless they are granted a waiver due to an inability to comply because of one of the statute’s specific “undue hardships”; (b) to be eligible for a waiver, states must submit a waiver application in strict compliance with the statutory requirements; and (c) that states must seek a waiver with respect to each election for federal office.
  • Direct the Voting Section that, if any state is not in compliance with the MOVE Act, the Voting Section shall promptly act to bring that state into compliance, including pursuing litigation whenever necessary.
  • Instruct the Voting Section that a state’s “comprehensive plan” to protect voting rights, which is a prerequisite for a state to receive a waiver, should provide military and overseas voters with at least 45 days of roundtrip transit time for the ballot to be received and returned by the voter,  so as to provide “sufficient time to vote.”
  • Provide me with a state-by-state breakdown regarding compliance with the 45-day requirement for the 2010 general election, including which states are expected to be in full compliance, which states have submitted waiver applications, which states are expected to submit waiver applications, and which states are expected to be in violation of the MOVE Act. 
For far too long in this country, we have failed to adequately protect the right of our troops and their families to participate in our democratic process.  The MOVE Act was supposed to end this sad history.  The right to participate in democratic elections is fundamental to the American experience.  Our men and women in uniform have stepped forward to defend that right, often at great personal cost to them and their loved ones, and they deserve the U.S. Government’s very best efforts to promote and protect their voting rights.  I look forward to your response committing to enforce the provisions of the MOVE Act and protect those civil rights.
United States Senator 
Secretary of Defense
Director, Federal Voting Assistance Program
Chief, Voting Section, Civil Rights Division, Department of Justice

Apparently We 'still' have Problems

Apparently those in the White House and Congress (exception of Cornyn) feel that they have done their usual job, of putting it on paper and yet, not doing the work to make sure all is well with a law 'they' passed and the 'President' signed.

Since Ms. Wertz was informing those at the NASS meeting how they can get a waiver for their state, then maybe 'We the People' should get it done, as my son always says "Do the work son!".  Get in touch with your state's Secretary of State and make sure they have done all they can do to implement this law.

If you are able, ask if they need volunteers to get the job done. If we Americans have not yet learned by now that we too must pull some of the weight at times to get things done, then this is not the America I love.

 If you can't volunteer I understand, at least let your voice be heard loud and clear to your state's Secretary of State, Senators, Representative, Obama, Eric Holder, you know those that work for us, that you will not stand for this.

No Waiver for us!  

Demand that your state 'is' in compliance with the M.O.V.E ACT.


Was this once 'your' child
Will we still be saying to each other "We need to do something about this.", when my grandson will be old enough to serve our country if he chooses to and/or is asked to, do we just sit back or do we take a stand, this is 'yours' to answer, are you up to the task?  I know I am.

Secretary of State for Alabama:  Beth Chapman

I have just started this blog so I only have one article to link this one to and I find it quite interesting, our government at work...

Operation 'Syria Down':  Libya 'is' the 'Biden Plan' ?

My non-Political Blog

The boots that I showcased at the top of this article belong to a man named Alan Dulin, SPC, U.S. Army.  These boots have endured two tours, Operation Iraq freedom and Operation New Dawn. 

Mrs. Dulin welcoming her husband back from his second tour and we are so relieved he made it back to his beautiful wife.  Alan was back home for the 2012 election so he had no trouble voting but, a lot of his brothers and sisters were not given the chance.  

Are we just going to sit back and allow this to happen once again, the answer (once again), belongs to all of us American citizens.

For more information on how to vote if you are in the military go to:

Eric Eversole's website is well worth your time: 

All photographs are the property of Denise O.  Do not use unless you get 'my' written permission. All written material is owned by Denise O, it will not be 'used' (sharing my article is different and acceptable) without 'my' written permission.  Just keeping it real folks.:)

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