DOD takes steps to aid absentee voters

| October 17, 2014 | 0 Comments

Screenshot of DOD voting assistance site

Mandi Richmond
DOD News

WASHINGTON — As the Nov. 4 midterm election nears, Defense Department officials are taking steps to ensure absentee voting is even easier for service members, their families and overseas citizens via the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s website.

In coordination with the military services and State Department, Absentee Voting Week (which began Sept. 29) aimed to raise awareness and remind voters of important deadlines.

If service members and their voting-age family members haven’t already done so, officials said, they should register to vote and request their absentee ballot. Once their ballots are received, voters are encouraged to mark and return the ballots or submit a backup ballot as soon as possible to ensure timely delivery.

Submission and receipt deadlines vary by state.

“DOD is working hard to provide the best possible voting assistance for our service members, their eligible family members and overseas citizens,” said FVAP director Matt Boehmer. “Our hope is that by raising awareness during Absentee Voting Week, more voters — especially those 18- to 24-year-olds who make up a large percentage of our uniformed services — will know that FVAP.gov is there to help them navigate the process.”

In support of Absentee Voting Week and in preparation for the election, FVAP has launched a new campaign aimed at first-time voters to ease them into the absentee voting process. The campaign, called “Voting is Easy,” likens voting to everyday choices, showcasing voting through the same lens as deciding between regular and decaf coffee or whether to get up or hit the snooze button when your alarm goes off, officials said.

FVAP works to ensure service members, their eligible family members and overseas citizens are aware of their right to vote and have the tools and resources to successfully do so from anywhere in the world.

Absentee Voting

FVAP’s website provides tools to guide voters through the process of registering and requesting their ballots. Voters can register and request their ballots using the online tools at FVAP.gov by selecting their state from the dropdown menu.

Read the “Voting is Easy” Campaign Special Report: Send Your Vote Home at www.defense.gov/home/features/2014/0614_vote/.

(Editor’s note: Richmond works with the Federal Voting Assistance Program.)

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