Saturday, July 19, 2008

Sue the Bastards

In the ultimate "fuck the troops" decision, Bush's VA doesn't want veterans receiving care in VA hospitals to be able to vote. Disgraceful. I hope Connecticut sues their asses and all other states join in.

Alternet: Fight Over the VA's Ban on Voter Registration Heads to Court

The state of Connecticut may file a federal lawsuit to force the Department of Veterans Affairs to allow voter registration drives, Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz said Friday.

"Time is of the essence," she said. "We have 109 days left before the election. The (Connecticut) Attorney General and I are looking at possible legal action. It is fair to say that is very likely."

Bysiewicz' comments came a day after she was notified by U.S. Secretary of Veterans Affairs James Peake that the VA would not permit voter registration drives at its campuses and was imposing new restrictions on who could contact veterans at VA facilities to help them register to vote.

"It is a disguised no," Bysiewicz said, referring to the VA's new policy that only "Voluntary Service" officers at VA facilities would be allowed to register the former soldiers. "It is legal mumbo-jumbo that appears to grant something but really takes away everything."

Anytime a person moves they must update their voter registration. This includes former soldiers who are receiving care at VA facilities.

In recent weeks, Bysiewicz has lead a bi-partisan effort among top state election officials to pressure the VA to become a voter registration agency like motor vehicle departments, which ask clients if they want to register during its regular course of business. More than 20 of these officials have signed a letter to the VA, urging a change in policy.

The Connecticut secretary of state is especially angered by the VA policy because the reasons cited by the VA for opposing voter registration drives -- they would interfere with its medical mission and be partisan -- have never been an issue at Connecticut's state veterans home in Rocky Hill.

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