Voting and paying tribute to members of the military are two ways Americans can show their patriotism.
A new program launched by the Secretary of State’s office during this election cycle allows Tennesseans to tie the two together.
The new program is called Tennessee Honor Vote. It provides state residents with the opportunity to dedicate their vote in this election to the servicemen and servicewomen of their choice.
To accomplish this, a new page has been developed on the Secretary of State’s website. On the site, people may dedicate a personal message to one or more active or retired members of the armed forces.
Once the messages have been reviewed, they will be posted online. Then, each participant will receive a button that says, “I’m voting in honor of their service.”
Since its creation two weeks ago, more than 2,500 current and former service members have been honored on the Tennessee Honor Vote website.
Warren County election administrator Donna Smith is a big fan of the program and also a participant. She dedicated her vote to her father, Arcie Smith, a World War II veteran.
The program is a means to encourage voter participation. The messages are not linked to a person’s actual vote. The program is viewed as an innovate way to reinforce the importance of voting.
With more than 27,000 members of the Tennessee National Guard having been deployed since 9-11, Major Gen. Max Haston says the program is another way to show support for the men and women defending our freedoms.
“Many of our soldiers and airmen have seen first hand in Iraq and Afghanistan just how important the right to cast your vote really is,” said Haston, a Warren County native. “This is a right we too often take for granted.”
To participate, visit www.GoVoteTN.com/honor or call toll free at 877-850-4959.