Since I am a Fairfax County resident (Reston) so I wrote to Rokey Suleman ([email protected]) expressing my outrage over his partisan decision to disenfranchise overseas military personnel. Here is his response:
I am taking a moment to answer your e-mail out of the hundreds of e-mails that I have received.
I did not choose to do this. This was a decision made by the Virginia legislature, passed down by the State Board of Elections and when I asked my county board if we could ignore this requirement they voted 3-0 to uphold the law.
We have received over 75,000 absentee applications from military and civilians. This affected 63 ballots of those 75,000 and of those 63 only 6-7 were military. The rest were ordinary folks like you or me living overseas. I was not disenfranchising the military.
But, why let the truth get in the way of a good story. It is unfortunate that people are using good folks like yourself to hype an agenda with things that are so far from the truth. People decided they could use a very small issue for partisan political game and chose to demonize me instead of working with me. I pointed this issue out to military voting rights groups in September. I alerted them to the problem and said we needed to fix it.
I have received threats, my staff has been abused verbally and my friends across the nation have been contacted regarding this. All because the truth does not matter. Again, I was not disenfranchising the military. I understand how hard it is for the military to vote. The first ballot I ever cast was an absentee ballot in boot camp.
I hope that a small portion of the truth sets your mind at ease,