Does being a veteran help win an election?

Political scientist says vet status is not the key to a win

Chas Henry
June 21, 2018 - 8:05 am
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Even while holding military veterans in high regard, most American voters will not select a candidate mainly because he or she served in uniform.  That's the finding of a former enlisted airman-turned-political scientist.  "While individual races probably have hinged on military service biographies of candidates, those are probably the exception," says Jeremy Teigen, a professor at Ramapo College in New Jersey.  "There’s no system-wide, over-encompassing advantage that veterans enjoy in the general elections."

Teigen has extensively researched military veterans vying for elected political office.  And he admits his findings can seem counter-intuitive to some, "especially when they look at advertisements where candidates bend over backwards to display their military service, or even exaggerate it."  He has written about his findings in the book Why Veterans Run -- and explained them to CBS Eye on Veterans:

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