We asked earlier if the veteran vote is up for grabs (and nearly two dozen people chimed in), and it appears that military vets are decisively in the corner of Mitt Romney.
We’re a bit late on this, but the folks at Gallup released a poll on Memorial Day showing the GOP presidential candidate with a sizable lead among veterans over President Obama.
The former Massachusetts governor enjoyed a 58 percent to 34 percent edge, despite the commander in chief’s efforts to woo the 13 percent of the nation’s population who served in the military.
Maybe it shouldn’t be too surprising considering the veteran bloc is made up of mostly older men who have traditionally voted Republican.
It’s a far cry from 2008 when Obama won vets under the age of 60, something Sen. John Kerry — a Vietnam veteran — couldn’t do in 2004, according to a May 30 USA Today article:
“It’s a totally different situation now,” said Merle Black, a professor of politics and government at Emory University in Atlanta. “The Bush administration was very unpopular. … Veterans are evaluating the president after three years in office. He’s not an unknown.”
For the first time in decades, the 2012 election is one where neither presidential candidate has served in the military.
It will be interesting to see if Romney can maintain his huge advantage among veterans as the media scrutinizes his record — or rather a lack of one when it comes to military service: he received four draft deferments during Vietnam.
There’s also doubt that veterans and active-duty military act as a cohesive voting bloc. A piece by the National Journal that appeared before the Gallup poll was released argues that military members and vets care about the same issues as the general population, such as jobs and health insurance.
What do you think? Do veterans vote as a bloc or do they mirror the public?