Several veterans slammed Mitt Romney on Monday for opposing and mischaracterizing an Obama campaign lawsuit which would expand early voting rights to veterans, cops, firefighters and all Ohio voters.
Romney had claimed — falsely — that the Obama campaign opposed allowing members of the military and their families to vote in-person in the three days before the election. Actually, the Obama campaign wants all people in Ohio — including, for example, veterans, cops and firefighters — to be able to vote during that period.
The Romney campaign has not responded to TPM’s multiple requests for comment on whether they believe Ohio firefighters and cops are worthy of early voting rights.
“When it comes to Mitt Romney, I feel like he lives in bizarro world,” Iraq veteran and former Rep. Patrick Murphy (D-PA) told reporters in a conference call organized by the Center for American Progress on Monday. “He’s suppressing millions of votes across our country in this election, and then he lies and says that President Obama is trying to do the same thing, when it couldn’t be further from the truth.”
Murphy said Romney’s opposition to the lawsuit was part of a coordinated effort to suppress the vote.
“President Obama is trying to restore voting rights for all people in Ohio and all across the country. They just want to give them a fair shake and let their voices be heard,” Murphy said. “I was absolutely dumbfounded when I found out over the weekend what Mitt Romney is trying to pull. He’s trying to pull the wool over people’s eyes and trying to use our veterans as props to further his lies.”
Jon Soltz, a veteran who now works with VoteVets.org, said that he was “appalled” by the narrative coming out of Ohio.
“Obviously with the narrative the Romney campaign is pushing, they probably don’t have a lot of people around them who have actually served,” Soltz said. “We also agree, like the president does, that someone who served in World World II in the Battle of the Bulge or someone who lost their legs in Vietnam has just as much of a right to vote as today’s veteran.”
Romney’s campaign claimed Sunday that Obama opposed special treatment for service members, though Obama’s suit explicitly said that Ohio “appropriately” granted voting rights to members of the military in the three days before the election.