The Daily Press reports:
Virginia campaign officials for GOP presidential candidate John McCain are saying some Fairfax County absentee ballots — and possibly some in Hampton Roads — from overseas service members are being rejected over a technicality.
But the Fairfax registrar said he was following state law in rejecting a small number of absentee ballots that came in at the same time as the voter’s application.
Fairfax General Registrar Rokey Suleman said Thursday that he had had to reject some of the ballots because of a Virginia law passed in 2002. That law — then called Senate Bill 113, sponsored by then-state Sen. Bill Bolling — requires that when an overseas citizen wants to request an absentee ballot and cast a vote with the same paperwork, it requires not only a witness signature but the current address of the witness.
The McCain campaign said there’s not even a space for the witness to list an address. Suleman agreed; he said that the federal document was changed in recent years and that the space for the witness address was removed. But the Virginia law hasn’t changed.
Suleman said he brought up the issue last month at a Pew Foundation conference on overseas voting.
Now, he said, he’s getting hammered by the McCain camp as someone trying to prevent service members from voting.
“I can’t ignore the law,” Suleman said. “I think it stinks.”
The Daily Press apparently wasn’t able to determine whether Suleman has a party affiliation, but since it matters, but my crack research staff has determined that he is a Democrat. He recently made news when he held a voter registration drive at the county detention center.
Anyway, didn’t the Democrats establish a few years ago that in order to protect voting rights, the law should be “liberally construed“? I guess that’s only when the law doesn’t favor them.