WILLIAM RIVERS PITT FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT
Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Chairman of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, has announced that an anonymous GOP Senator has blocked a bill to provide veterans and their spouses with a Cost of Living increase in the benefits they receive.
You read that right. What has been since time out of mind a thoroughly non-partisan and non-controversial annual act has been anonymously blocked by some Senate Republican for reasons passing understanding. This bill affects 3.9 million veterans and their families, and the cowardly ball of filth who did this has not come forward.
"This is stunning" said Senator Murray. "Particularly because we still don't have any indication why someone would block a cost-of-living adjustment for veterans and their surviving spouses, many of whom are struggling to make ends meet. This adjustment for our disabled veterans is hard earned and well deserved."
Paul Sullivan, a Gulf War veteran and Director of Veterans Outreach for Bergmann & Moore, LLC, a law firm concentrating on VA disability law, said, "This secret hold is unconscionable: it will take up to $500 next year out of the wallets of disabled veterans and their families: money they need to pay their rent and put food on the table for their children."
So, just to be clear here:
Vote for war in Iraq: YES
Vote for war in Afghanistan: YES
Vote for COLA increase for veterans and their spouses: NO
...and just to add a little more Republican salt to the wound:
Vote for Veterans' Jobs Bill last week: FILIBUSTERED TO DEATH by the GOP
I am, quite literally, choking on my own rage right now.
These scum-riddled Republican ghouls are all too happy to throw American men and women into the meat-grinder of for-profit wars, but God help them if they actually survive the carnage and come home as veterans. There is no home front to return to in the world these Republicans would make. There is only the back of their hand, so sorry, helping you after you served our country cuts against our small-government ethos. Once upon a time, we had the GI Bill. Now, we have this.
The Roman method for dealing with corruption was to sew the offender into a sack with a wild animal and have that sack thrown into the river. In these enlightened days, I'd be satisfied to sew whoever blocked this legislation into a sack with five veterans who depend on the benefits earned with their blood and service, and let nature take its course.
I would pay long money to see that.
UPDATE 6:55 p.m. EST: According to this Washington Post report, the anonymous hold has been lifted. Great news for veterans and their families, but still thoroughly disgusting that someone chose to play this despicable game...and thanks to that hold, the Senate has almost no time to pass the bill before the session expires, so 3.9 million veterans and their families may yet get screwed by one anonymous Republican coward.