Register now for absentee ballot
June 18, 2010
<b>FORT STEWART, Ga. </b>- "There are potentially six million military voters that could vote in the upcoming election," said Louisa Sigman, voting assistance officer with Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield's Directorate of Human Resources. "Many people may think this year is an off-year election, but Americans will be voting on 38 seats for the U.S. Senate, all 434 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and 39 state or territorial governor seats."
Armed Forces Voters Week is June 28 to July 7, Sigman said. In order to inform Soldiers, Family Members and Army Civilians how they can register to vote here in Georgia or obtain an absentee ballot from their home state, she said voting assistance representatives will be manning information tables at Fort Stewart's main post exchange and the commissary, June 28, June 30 and July 3, and at Hunter's commissary June 29 and July 1. In addition to general voting information about state primaries and registration deadlines, Sigman said voter information tables will include the Federal Post Card Application, which can be filled out and mailed in to the county of the state in which you are registered to vote.
"You're registering with the state, so they'll send you an absentee ballot," Sigman explained. "One thing that's extremely important this year is that the National Defense Authorization for 2010 says you should submit a new FPCA to your state every year and whenever you change your address. A lot of people don't realize this."
She recommends you send in your FPCA by Aug. 15 to ensure you receive your absentee ballot in time to vote and return it to be counted. Soldiers, Army Civilians and others serving in Iraq, Afghanistan or other overseas areas without access to the military postal system should return their absentee ballots by October 2. Soldiers, Family Members and Army Civilians here at Stewart-Hunter should return their absentee ballot by Oct. 25.
Military and civilian voters should submit ballot request for the July through September state primaries now.
The following states will hold primary elections, August-September 2010 on the dates indicated:
July 20: Georgia
July 27: Oklahoma
Aug. 3: Kansas, Michigan, Missouri
Aug. 5: Tennessee
Aug. 10: Colorado, Connecticut, Minnesota
Aug. 17: Wyoming
Aug. 24: Alaska, Arizona, Florida, Vermont
Aug. 28: Louisiana
Sept. 4: Guam
Sept. 11: Virgin Islands
Sept. 14: Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, Wisconsin
Sept. 18: Hawaii
Sigman said Federal Post Card Applications can be obtained from unit voting assistance representatives with rear detachment commands; her office in at the Soldier Service Center, building 253; the Paul R. Smith Education Center; and the Transition Point at Hunter, building 1286. For questions, call 9121-767-6044 or visit www.fvap.com.
"When you vote, you're picking someone to represent your interests," Sigman said, emphasizing the importance of voting. "If you don't vote, you're letting someone pick your representative."