CONGRESS PASSES VETERANS’ BILLS
VFW angry with 3 senators voting no
June 12, 2014
The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States is thanking the House and Senate for the overwhelming passage of two veterans’ bills this week to help fix the current crisis in care and access to Department of Veterans Affairs health care facilities. On Tuesday, the House unanimously passed H.R. 4810, the “Veteran Access to Care Act of 2014,” by a vote of 426-0, and the Senate on Wednesday passed S. 2450, the “Veterans’ Access to Care through Choice, Accountability, and Transparency Act of 2014,” by a vote of 93-3. Both bills now move to a conferencing committee to iron out the few differences that do exist, but hopefully not to the point of being a deal breaker, according to VFW leadership.
But as encouraging as the pending legislation is came three no votes from Republican Sens. Bob Corker (Tenn.), Ron Johnson (Wis.) and Jeff Sessions (Ala.), because they put dollars and cents above the interests of the nation’s veterans.
“There is a cost of going to war that includes taking care of those who come home wounded, ill and injured, and if these three senators have determined that we can’t afford to properly care for our veterans, then they should seek employment elsewhere!” exclaimed VFW National Commander William A. Thien.
“This is a national crisis that must be fixed, period,” he said. “This is about saving lives, restoring faith, and honoring a nations’ commitment to her veterans, and the VFW fully expects every member of Congress to support the final bill, because I can guarantee you that the price veterans paid in their own blood far exceeds any price tag some members of Congress want to proclaim is too high.
“The nationwide crisis in care and access demands quick action, and the VFW wants to thank House VA Committee Chairman Jeff Miller (R-Fla.), Ranking Member Mike Michaud (D-Me.), Senate VA Committee Chairman Bernie Sanders (I-Vt), Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), and the 515 other yes votes the two bills garnered,” said the VFW national commander, who now asks for a quick resolution on the differences so that one bill can get passed and to the president for his signature.
Regarding the three no votes, Thien said the last thing veterans want to hear is flimsy excuses that won’t hold water. “When it comes to taking care of America’s veterans, there is no discussion. Senators Corker, Johnson and Sessions should know this; veterans have long memories and veterans vote,” he said.