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Vets deserve better than confusion on defense funding and VA staffing

By Dr. Lyndon Haviland

June 29, 2024

TheHill.com

Once a bipartisan process, the [National Defense Authorization Act] barely passed the U.S. House this month. The reason: Republican members of Congress attached agenda-driven amendments to it, ranging from restrictions on military access to abortion services to banning the display of pride flags and books that address gender identity.      

Party-line votes on defense spending measures send the wrong message to our troops. And it couldn’t come at a worse time, as the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs struggles to address the needs of those who put their lives on the line to defend our country.

The VA has announced 10,000 staffing reductions for the next fiscal year — cutbacks that will burden an already stressed healthcare system and adversely impact those who wear or have worn the uniform. …

[T]he use of the NDAA as a political weapon sends a distasteful signal by creating confusion and uncertainty for our veterans.  

Hindering access to quality care for our American heroes by eliminating thousands of jobs at the VA only adds insult to injury.