The Romney campaign has declared it an outrage that the Obama campaign has sought to deprive military voters in Ohio of the right to vote the weekend prior to election day.
Now, just in case you are so cynical as to second-guess the truthfulness of Romney campaign declarations, a US court in Ohio held yesterday in favor of the Obama campaign, and against a law passed by the newly all-Republican state general assembly late last year, that all voters and not just military voters (who enjoyed an exemption under the restrictive Republican law) should have the right to vote in person during the weekend prior to election day. So, military voters get exactly what they expected. Others get the same as military voters, which is what may outrage the Romney campaign.
All right, that’s a clear, um, misstatement by the Romney campaign. Any time the Romney campaign brands another, er, misstatement as an Obama campaign outrage, though, it’s worth peeling the onion a little further to see just what outrage the Romney campaign is projecting on its opponents.
As background, recall the long lines of black Americans waiting in Cleveland after the 2004 polls had closed and the remarkable fact that state secretary Ken Blackwell had tried to block poll workers from issuing provisional ballots according to Ohio law in cases where they could not confirm a voter’s registration. This after CEO Wally O’Dell of Diebold, the Ohio company that made the touch-screen voting machines that failed spectacularly in 2004 (and failed again in Cuyahoga Country in 2006 when it wasn’t even necessary) said out loud that he could guarantee the state for President Bush. (In case you’re worried about it, Blackwell sold his Diebold shares before the 2006 failure.)
So the Romney campaign is outraged that military voters in Ohio get no better treatment than those trying to vote early after being victimized in 2004 by the cynical withholding of resources to inner-city polling stations. The biggest irony will be, of course, that the overwhelmingly young and shot-at military may well thank the Obama administration for getting them out of wars-for-Republican-reelection by crossing party lines this year and voting Democratic.