In a statement issued on Saturday, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney attacked a lawsuit filed by President Barack Obama's campaign which seeks to restore the early voting rights for Ohio votes by making false implications that Obama is attempting to take away early voting rights for members of the military.
Romney said in the statement:
“President Obama’s lawsuit claiming it is unconstitutional for Ohio to allow servicemen and women extended early voting privileges during the state’s early voting period is an outrage."
The problem is, however, is that the lawsuit attempts to do no such thing. Filed in mid-July, the lawsuit asks a federal court to restore in-person early voting rights to all eligible Ohio voters on the three days leading up to Election Day. The lawsuit doesn't seek to stop members of the military from voting in person during that period. Rather, the lawsuit seeks to require Ohio to give other votes the same opportunity to vote.
In the statement, Romney said that if he was president, he would “work to protect the voting rights of our military, not undermine them", adding that members of the military “make tremendous sacrifices to protect and defend our freedoms, and we should do everything we can to protect their fundamental right to vote.”
Obama's campaign is already reacting to Romney's statements, saying it is a "blatant attempt to mislead" voters.
Bob Bauer, the attorney for Obama for America, said in a statement:
“This lawsuit seeks to treat all Ohio citizens equally under the law. We want to restore the right of all to vote before Election Day.”
Ohio for America Veterans and Military Family Vote Director Rob Diamond issued the following statement::
“Mitt Romney and his campaign have completely fabricated a claim that the Obama campaign is trying to restrict military voting in Ohio. In fact, the opposite is true: the Obama campaign filed a lawsuit to make sure every Ohioan, including military members and their families, has early voting rights over the last weekend prior to the election. The case filed with the court could not be clearer on this point. The real story of what is happening in the Buckeye State is that Mitt Romney supports the Republican effort to stop people from voting by restricting their access to the polls. In 2008, more than 93,000 Ohioans utilized early voting in the three days before the election. In complete disregard of the will of Ohio voters expressed last year through the referendum process, the Republican legislature is attempting to remove from the vast majority of voters — including veterans of our armed services — the early voting rights they enjoyed in 2008. This latest Republican attack on rights of voters is shameful — and so is Mitt Romney’s endorsement of it.”