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Pentagon Report Finds Military Voting Efforts Underfunded, Ineffective


"We concluded the Services had not established all the [installation voting assistance offices] as intended by the MOVE Act because, among other issues, the funding was not available," the inspector concluded.

Officials with Federal Voting Assistance Program also said they are "investing in intuitive, easy-to-use web-based tools" instead of voting assistance offices which they believe could "substantially reduce cost and improve voting assistance." Other military officials also told the inspector they believed reaching out to web-savvy, younger military personnel via websites and social media would be more cost-effective.

The inspector recommended that the Pentagon develop legislation that would remove the requirement that they maintain a voting assistance office on each installation and instead give military secretaries more discretion. The inspector the physical voting assistance offices "costly" and "ineffective."

A report from the Military Voter Protection Project last month found that military requests for absentee ballots were low in several surveyed states.

"Election Day 2012 could result in an all-time historic low for military voter participation," Eric Eversole, founder and executive director of the Military Voter Protection Project said in a written statement. "While military voters have long suffered from low participation rates, these numbers are extremely disappointing given the comprehensive reform passed by Congress in 2009. That law should have increased military voter participation, not decreased it."