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News Friday, Feb 19 2016

On His Re-Election Kickoff Day, A Reminder Of Blunt's Terrible Record On Veterans

Feb 19, 2016

Today, Senator Roy Blunt is kicking off his re-election campaign. Over the past few weeks, Blunt has been in hot water for deceiving Missouri veterans and voters about the three draft deferments he received during the Vietnam War. Blunt has said previously that he would have served in the military if he was drafted.

Blunt’s terrible record on veterans issues goes well beyond dishonesty. For years, he’s been on defense for bad votes. As one veteran wrote in a 2012 St. Louis Dispatch Letter to the Editor,

Mr. Blunt has continuously shown his disregard and contempt for veterans, disabled veterans, and our current military personnel who serve here in the United States, in all parts of the world, and in particular in the war zones that the Republican Party created in Afghanistan and Iraq. Mr. Blunt doesn’t give a crap about the men and women who have given their lives to protect him and his family by volunteering to serve in the military forces of the United States.

Mr. Blunt doesn’t believe that the hundreds of thousands of veterans of these wars deserve the respect, the medical care, or the assistance they were promised when they volunteered to serve our nation.

Blunt’s voting record for veterans is despicable. Missouri deserves someone who will stand up for the men and women who put their lives on the line to keep America safe. Instead, nearly every year since he’s taken office, Blunt’s votes have hurt veterans, making it more difficult to access the benefits they need and deserve:

  • Last year, Blunt effectively voted against additional Veterans Affairs funding to hire more doctors and nurses.
  • In 2014, Blunt effectively voted against expanding veterans’ health care, education benefits and job training aid. The bill would have provided dental care to 30,000 veterans and cut public education tuition for vets.
  • In 2013, Blunt voted against providing $27 million for the Veterans Health Administration.
  • As a representative in the House, Blunt voted against increasing bankruptcy protection for members of the military, veterans, and their families.
  • In 2008, Blunt voted against expanding education benefits for veterans.
  • In 2007, Blunt voted against increasing veterans and defense health care spending by $4.8 billion.
  • In 2005, Blunt voted against providing job training, search, and relocation costs to veterans returning for Iraq.
  • In 2006, Blunt effectively voted against increasing pension benefits received by widows and orphans of deceased or fully disabled military personnel.
  • In 2005, Blunt voted against adding $100 million for military health care and providing $50 million for transitional job training for returning troops even though at the time the U.S. had done “very little to provide support for the [Iraq War] veterans.”
  • In 2003 while in the House, Blunt voted against allowing eligible veterans to receive full disability and retirement benefits at the same time, which would have eliminated what supporters considered a “tax on disabled veterans.”
  • In 2003, Blunt voted against providing $1.3 billion for veterans health care.

Published: Feb 19, 2016

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