By Gerald WilliamsOctober 5, 2016
FORT BENNING, Ga., (Oct. 5, 2016) -- The Installation Voting Assistance Office is highlighting early voting Oct. 17-Nov. 4, and continues to push voter registration ahead of the Nov. 8 general election.
"This is something the Armed Forces do every year," said Vincent Cohran installation voting assistant officer. "This is the big push since general elections are coming up Nov. 8. For those individuals who have not registered to vote we want them to be part of the election.
"Soldiers are busy. They have lots of responsibilities and things they need to do. A lot of them are planning to register to vote, but they just haven't had the time to yet. What we try to do is make it convenient. They're going to go to the commissary. They're going to go to the Post Exchange. We have booths set up there for this reason. To help make it easier for Soldiers to vote living the lifestyle that they do."
Cohran stated that it takes just three to five minutes, depending on how fast the person writes, to register to vote.
"They just have to fill out a form and we take care of the rest," said Cohran. "All they need is a form of identification or social security number.
"We also have early voting available from October 17 to November 4. So if you want to go ahead and vote early, you'll have the opportunity to. This also includes Saturdays and Sundays at the City Services Center."
Cohran stated that the Installation Voting Assistant Office does more than just promote general elections. They also promote elections for senators and representatives for the state of Georgia.
"Our job is year-round. We're more busy certain times of the year than others, but we are always active."
Cohran also stated that all residents on Fort Benning have the opportunity to register for voting.
"If there is a civilian who is visiting a family member on the installation then they can also register to vote," added Cohran.
According to Cohran, voting is an important action to take even if you do not like certain candidates.
"You need to look at the bigger picture," said Cohran. "The election is also about your state and local government. You've got roads, hospitals, and schools that can be improved upon depending on who you vote for at a state level. It's not just about general elections.
"If you feel like you don't want to vote ask yourself if you feel like there is nothing in the community that you are not satisfied with. There has to be something. Voting will make the difference for a better community."
"That vote matters," said Sgt. 1st Class Jim Mitchusson, 1st Battalion, 29th Infantry Regiment. "You don't want someone to be in office that you don't want. One vote can make the difference."
"Voting is not about ourselves," said Sgt. 1st Class Israel Cordero, 1st Battalion, 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment. "It's about our family. Everything we do now can help our family in the future. A lot of times we get wrapped up and not liking certain candidates but it's all about the future for our family."