Sen. Rob Kane Wants to Help Soldiers Vote [Oxford Patch]

February 28, 2013

Article as it appeared in the Oxford Patch

Oxford’s state senator wants to allow military personnel overseas easier access to the ballot box.

A bill that Sen. Rob Kane, R-Watertown, has championed over the years, proposed Bill No. 647, “An Act Concerning Voting by Members of the Military Serving Overseas,” received a public hearing Tuesday Feb. 19 in the legislature’s Veterans’ Affairs Committee.

The bill would allow military personnel serving overseas to return their ballots by email or by fax. It is sponsored by Sen. Gayle Slossberg, D-Milford, and several democrat legislators.

Kane has proposed a similar bill in past legislative sessions, only to see the measure voted down repeatedly. He thanked Democrats for joining in their support of the bill.

“Allowing our military personnel serving overseas to return their ballots by email will help to solve the problem of military absentee ballots which sometimes arrive too late to be counted in elections,” Kane stated in a news release. “Banks and financial markets transfer millions of dollars every day via the online systems. If we can do that, why can’t we allow our military personnel the ability to vote online for the elections they are defending when they defend our country? I thank Sen. Slossberg and all of the bill’s co-sponsors for adopting and expanding on ideas I put forth in past legislative sessions.”

Currently, members of Connecticut’s military can submit applications for absentee voting online, but cannot cast their ballot over a secure website. Sen. Kane said he was pleased to see his idea being adopted by Democrats and moving forward in the legislative process.

“We owe this to the men and women who fight for us and put their lives on the line for our country,” Kane said. “They are overseas defending our freedoms, including that precious freedom so many of us take for granted – the freedom to vote.”

Kane’s bill, Proposed Bill No. 283, “An Act Concerning On-Line Voting for Military Personnel Stationed Out of State”, has not received a public hearing in the current legislative session.