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Anchors Aweigh, my friends! Is association with the Ryan budget enough baggage to sink Romney?
In selecting Paul Ryan, the Mittbot has taken a very Romney-esque position of embracing the man, but trying to distance himself from the man's actual ideas and plans.

Now, I imagine the way this will work out, is Romney will express support for the general principles of the Ryan plan, as he has many times in the past, so the Tea Party base will see starbursts. But he'll say there are problems, things he'd fix, so he can conveniently have an out—a line-item veto if you will—when challenged on anything that's unpopular, draconian, Dickensian or downright horrific.

And of course, we'll have to play 50 questions with the Romney camp to find out exactly which parts of the Ryan plan Romney does not think are "marvelous!" That's ok, we have 80 some days, the more we talk about the Ryan Pathway to Poverty, the better.

Of course, the way things are going it's doubtful Romney will answer 50 questions before the election. So, let's start with Ryan's plan for the veteran's spending, shall we?

Suddenly relevant again is a piece that Jon Stoltz, co-founder of Vote Vets posted to Huffington Post in March in response to the Ryan Plan.

GOP Budget Doesn't Even Say the Word "Veteran"

Do Republicans care about keeping our promise to veterans?

Looking at the recently released GOP budget, written by Rep. Paul Ryan, it's hard to see how they do. In fact, looking at the nearly 100 page document, the word "veteran" doesn't appear once. Not once.


But, without saying the word "veteran," the budget tells us a lot about what they think about veterans. The budget calls for across the board spending freezes and cuts. If enacted, the Ryan GOP budget would cut $11 billion from veterans spending, or 13 percent from what President Obama proposes in his own plan.

It's unconscionable that they'd do this at a time when so many Iraq veterans have just come home and rely on veterans care. Over 45,000 US troops were wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan, and more will come who will rely on VA services, on top of veterans of other wars and eras who depend on the VA. But, this shortsightedness isn't new.

101013-N-6736S-108.DECATUR, Ga. (Oct. 13, 2010) Rear Adm. Micheal J. Yurina, director of Strategic Planning and Communication, Submarine Warfare Division, visits with veterans at a VA hospital during an Atlanta Navy Week 2010 event. Atlanta Navy Week is one of 19 Navy weeks planned across America in 2010. Navy weeks show Americans the investment they have made in their Navy and increase awareness in cities that do not have a significant Navy presence. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Katrina Sartain/Released).
The Veterans Administration has historically been underfunded, as anyone paying attention can tell you. Now that the neo-cons have managed to play rock-em-sock-em on a global scale, recklessly waging war here, there and everywhere, are they really going to just walk away from our men and women in uniform as they are now returning? Now that they need the support to rebuild their bodies, their minds, their lives?

I wish I could say I'd be surprised, but Republican's support for our troops has always been a mile wide and and inch deep. The backdrop of a Navy battleship serving to obfuscate that neither Romney nor Ryan ever actually served in the military is the perfect metaphor for much of the GOP's relationship with troops. Yeah, they're there to wave the flag, when the election's 80 days away. How about when you need a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder to collect benefits. Are they around then?

More from Stoltz:

Yet, here we are. A budget from the GOP that short changes veterans, horribly. And where does that money go? Not to reducing the debt. The debt as a share of GDP would actually increase under the Ryan plan. The money doesn't go towards anything, really. But it does go towards some people. As in $3 trillion in tax giveaways to the richest Americans and corporations. People like Mitt Romney, who already pays a tax rate lower than most of our troops.

That's the choice the Ryan plan presents to America -- do we want to fund the wealthiest Americans and corporations, or keep our promise to our veterans? Ryan and the GOP say the former. I can't believe that most Americans wouldn't say the latter.

In the absence of a detailed plan coming out of the Romney campaign, we're forced to assume Ryan's addition to the ticket signals Romney's agreement with Ryan's spending priorities.

I'd very much like to know if Paul Ryan's plan for the veterans spending was the part Romney found "marvelous."

Originally posted to Military Community Members of Daily Kos on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 06:43 PM PDT.

Also republished by DKos Military Veterans, Ryan Inc, and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  PTSD? Benefits? (19+ / 0-)

    What are those fancy terms that you're using to justify your laziness, soldier?

    Rmoney and Ryan know that the way to get you what you need is to take care of you the way the Army/Navy/Air Force/Marine Corp/Coast Guard did!  

    Give you a canteen of water and tell you to drive on.


    I don't blame Christians. I blame Stupid. Which sadly is a much more popular religion these days.

    by detroitmechworks on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 06:50:18 PM PDT

  •  Hahahaha!!! (29+ / 0-)

    Really, Scott, you're killing me.  Name one Republican who actually gives a fuck about veterans (unless they can be recycled back to war)?  It is like naming one Republican who cares about human life once it starts sucking oxygen.  

    These people are odious.  Ryan's big plan is to have what Romney has.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 06:50:27 PM PDT

  •  Isn't "marvelous" a gay word ? (8+ / 0-)

    "Drop the name-calling." Meteor Blades 2/4/11

    by indycam on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 06:50:27 PM PDT

  •  In the Romney camp, nobody seems to THINK (22+ / 0-)

    The VP pick has tuned up SO many areas on which Romney and Ryan can be pushed that Romney will probably at some point in September say, "Hey! Don't you want to know more about Bain Capital and outsourcing?"

    I thought the convention would be fun, but I can see this campaign making McCain 2008 (yes, including Sister Sarah) look like the most buttoned-up serious campaign the Republicans have ever run. Their Tea Party Senators don't even have anyone like Sharron Angle or Christine O'Donnell to distract the media.

    And, to stay on topic, you REALLY want to alienate American Veterans, don't you.  The stupid, it burns!

    -7.75, -8.10; All it takes is security in your own civil rights to make you complacent.

    by Dave in Northridge on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 06:51:37 PM PDT

  •  Bringing up that neither Romney nor Ryan (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gooserock, bythesea, ExStr8, cai

    served in the military is probably not all that winning a point. E.g.,

    Biden received five student draft deferments during this period, with the first coming in late 1963 and the last in early 1968, at the peak of the Vietnam War.

    (I honestly didn't know about Biden's military background until I just looked it up now)

  •  I love it! (10+ / 0-)
    the Ryan Pathway to Poverty
    Did you coin the phrase?
  •  I Will Echo Something Melissa Harris Perry (12+ / 0-)

    said in the early AM yesterday on Up. That their announcement on a former active ship was terrible. She said at first she was confused, cause she had to head to "The Google" to find it wasn't an active duty ship and how could they do this.

    These men did not serve. I have not served, but I come from a family of military folks. If you have the balls to serve. Risk maybe being called upon or pick up a gun and go fight, you can wrap yourself with the military.

    When you don't, and again neither Mitt nor Ryan did, you don't get to do that. You just don't!

    When opportunity calls pick up the phone and give it directions to your house.

    by webranding on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 06:56:04 PM PDT

  •  "the Ryan Pathway to Poverty" (5+ / 0-)

    You're better than Frank Luntz. Ironically it just so happens to be true.

    I hope this meme picks up.

    Romney/Rove 2012: If you liked Bush's Brain... you'll love Romney's.

    by jethrock on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 07:12:14 PM PDT

  •  Romney's Budget Cut proposals Require deeper cuts (5+ / 0-)

     than Ryan Budget.

    ...He's a man who has demonstrated time and again that he'll cut whatever programs he has to--in order to finance tax cuts for himself and the other rich people supporting his presidential bid.  

    While everyone's examining Ryan's budget-which is destructive enough--according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Romney's Budget would mean that major cuts would have to be made to most social programs:  

    ...Compensation payments for disabled veterans (which average less than $13,000 a year) would be cut by more than one-fourth, as would pensions for low-income veterans (which average about $11,000 a year) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for poor aged and disabled individuals (which average about $6,000 a year and leave poor elderly and disabled people well below the poverty line)...

    ...If anything, these examples may understate the potential effects of Governor Romney's budget proposals.  By 2022, if the budget had to be balanced while taxes were cut, the proposals would require cutting entitlement and discretionary programs other than Social Security and core defense by more than half.  And if policymakers offset none (rather than half) of Romney's tax cuts by reducing tax preferences, they would have to cut these programs by more than 70 percent...

    Apparently the only people Romney cares about are Romney, and the 1% of Americans just like him--and there aren't many veterans in that group.  

  •  Yes he does... (3+ / 0-)

    because Republicans hate veterans as much as they hate 9/11 first responders.

    •  GOP believe that since it is "an all volunteer (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Laconic Lib

      army" it is their fault for being there.  They don't deserve anything more.  

      As GOP Rep Jack Kingston from GA-1 said:  My son is not interested in the military.  End of question.

      GOP only care about the military industrial complex.  You have to increase their budget.

  •  The worst part is that fact that the elderly (4+ / 0-)

    and military will overwhelmingly support these two. Very, very sad. I wonder if there is something that we are missing. Picking Ryan was probably the worst thing that Romney could do, and what does he do...he picks Ryan! This doesn't maek any sense to me. He picked a guy who doesn't help in anywhere. Unless Wisconsin will go for R & R, I don't see how this helps in any other swing states.

    Foreign Policy is a bust, social programs are a bust, what is the Romney Campaign doing?

    When the operation of the machine becomes so odious that you can't take part,you've got to put your bodies upon the gears;you got to make it stop.Indicate to the people who run it that unless you're free the machine will be prevented from working at all

    by YoungArizonaLiberal on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 07:23:43 PM PDT

    •  the way I see it... (3+ / 0-)

      Romney was under constant attack from the right.

      He faced a cross roads. He could run directly into the Teabagger fire, or away from the Teabagger fire.

      He went all in and ran into the Teabagger fire.

      At least he committed.

      I personally don't think there WAS a real choice out there that could improve his prospects for actually winning.

      Do you?

      You're not being "oppressed" when another group gains rights you've always enjoyed.

      by Scott Wooledge on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 07:34:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes, I think it would have been smarter for (5+ / 0-)

        Romney to pick Pawlenty and Rand Paul. Those two are good enough for the tea party to chew on without completely pisisng off a key constituency for the GOP. Having Paul on the ticket could mobilize the libertarian young folks. Having Pawlenty would have been enough for the Evangelicals but Ryan...Sweet Jesus Almighty, what an awful pick. He brings nothing but bad news for this campaign.

        I was hoping for a landslide before, and I think I will get my wish. Obama can start jedi mindfucking Mitt in places that he doesn't need to win like Indiana, Missouri and Arizona. I live in AZ and the amount of mobilization here is more than I've ever seen (in my short lifetime). I think Obama is trying to get the Senate seat here and planting seeds for 2016.

        When the operation of the machine becomes so odious that you can't take part,you've got to put your bodies upon the gears;you got to make it stop.Indicate to the people who run it that unless you're free the machine will be prevented from working at all

        by YoungArizonaLiberal on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 07:48:27 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Didn't he have a choice between leaning towards (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          YoungArizonaLiberal, FiredUpInCA

          the libertarians or leaning towards the con artists on the extreme right? I think he himself is such an authoritarian he couldn't get over himself (and may be the people in his church, who back him, too) to lean towards the right-wing libertarians. Libertarians are such a "freaky" species.

          •  True but libertarians are passionate as hell (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            mimi, FiredUpInCA

            and would put some gasoline on Romney's Boy Scout fire. Too bad, I was starting to worry about this election, now I'm just going to make sure that downticket races in my area go Dem.

            Romney is done, put a fork in 'em!

            When the operation of the machine becomes so odious that you can't take part,you've got to put your bodies upon the gears;you got to make it stop.Indicate to the people who run it that unless you're free the machine will be prevented from working at all

            by YoungArizonaLiberal on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 08:04:34 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  We thought Scott Walker was done, too. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              deep, FiredUpInCA

              Then the Rove and Koch PACs kicked in.

              Let's don't get cocky.

              © cai Visit to join the fight against global warming.

              by cai on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 08:07:49 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Walker was leading nearly every poll against (3+ / 0-)

                Barrett correct? This isn't like that at all. Plus Obama is a better politician than Barrett and will match Romney very closely in campaign funds.

                Wisconsin also didn't seem to get very much DNC/White House support so it was bound to be a tragedy.

                When the operation of the machine becomes so odious that you can't take part,you've got to put your bodies upon the gears;you got to make it stop.Indicate to the people who run it that unless you're free the machine will be prevented from working at all

                by YoungArizonaLiberal on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 08:18:38 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  Paul & T-Paw (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Would still be a losing running mate.

          I don't think it matters much. The math and science of getting elected have failed Romney.  Ryan has more charisma sleeping than T-Paw has at his best. And Paul has only been a Senator two years, right? I don't know that the Libertarian vote is that big. (it failed his dad.)

          Ryan represents a hail Mary of trusting in the art of getting elected. I can understand the pick.

          You're not being "oppressed" when another group gains rights you've always enjoyed.

          by Scott Wooledge on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 08:10:40 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Three-pronged Hail Mary (0+ / 0-)
      What is the Romney Campaign doing?
      They're counting on voter suppression, Citizen's United cash and the bottom to fall out of the economy (higher unemployment, higher gas prices.)

      Their vision to win is to break what is left the American people so they have no other choice but to vote for "Heartless Shrugged. Romney/Ryan 2012."

      The choice of our lifetime: Mitt Romney, It Takes A Pillage or President Barack Obama, Forward Together.

      by FiredUpInCA on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 11:10:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  But Ryan's brother, Tobin, was a Senior Manager (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      at Bain, left the company and made millions for Romney.  Thus Paul Ryan is family.  Romney could not pick Tagg so he did the next best thing.

      •  Wow, the plot thickens even more (0+ / 0-)

        Thanks for the link

        When the operation of the machine becomes so odious that you can't take part,you've got to put your bodies upon the gears;you got to make it stop.Indicate to the people who run it that unless you're free the machine will be prevented from working at all

        by YoungArizonaLiberal on Sun Aug 19, 2012 at 06:35:42 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I think it would be more "mahvelous!" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Scott Wooledge

    You know, more of a Thurston Howell / Jim Bachus kind of delivery.

    Toto, I've a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore

    by Minerva on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 07:24:44 PM PDT

  •  Well said, although I don't much care for (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    the idea that somebody has to serve in the military to be a fit president.  Evidence shows otherwise.

    In fact, I look forward to the day when we elect a veteran of the Peace Corps!  :p

    © cai Visit to join the fight against global warming.

    by cai on Sun Aug 12, 2012 at 08:00:55 PM PDT

  •  While defeating these clowns is job one (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Job two is congress. As we've seen in the past  Presidential visions typically get dumped in the trash by the opposing party

    What  GOP house and senate come up with would be signed into law by a republican president and we know how they feel about ACA and matters such as this.

    The 1st Amendment gives you the right to say stupid things, the 1st Amendment doesn't guarantee a paycheck to say stupid things.

    by JML9999 on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 08:15:31 PM PDT

  •  Sometimes, the worst possible thing for a veteran (0+ / 0-)

    is when peace breaks out.
    Ask around.

    Fuck Big Brother...from now on, WE'RE watching.

    by franklyn on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 08:16:05 PM PDT

  •  What always boggles my mind is why (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cany, Laconic Lib

    such a large percentage of the vets are Republicans.

    The Republicans really like to play war but don't like to consider or be responsible for the consequences.

    •  Doesn't it follow that these vets should vote dem? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      According to Fish, Laconic Lib

      What's up with that?

      202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

      by cany on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 08:23:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I have no idea (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Laconic Lib

        But I also don't get why middle-class and poor people in the deep south vote against their self-interests and are reliable Republicans.

        Well, that is someone of a lie, I do think I have a clue and it has to do with the race issue which has been used as a weapon against Democrats in the south since the civil rights movement.

  •  Ok, this will be a long post, but.. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sparkysgal, Boris49, KenBee, Laconic Lib

    Paul Ryan has a long history of voting against benefits for veterans. On the other hand, he had no trouble voting for the war in Iraq.

    hat tip to jimstaro


        Ryan Voted Against Protecting Veterans’ Benefits from the Cut, Cap, and Balance Cuts. In July 2011, Ryan voted against a motion to recommit the bill with instructions that it be reported back with an amendment that would state that it will not be in order to consider balanced-budget constitutional amendments that could result in a reduction in veterans benefits. According to the St. Louis Dispatch, “Members defeated, 236-188, a bid by Democrats to protect veterans’ benefits from being trimmed in the $5.8 trillion, 10-year budget-cutting plan imposed by HR 2560…A yes vote backed the motion over GOP arguments that the plan already protected veterans’ benefits in full.” [Roll Call 605, H 2560, 07/19/2011; St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 7/25/11]

        Ryan Supported Budget that Cut Veterans Programs. In 2005, Ryan voted in favor of final passage of the $2.6 trillion budget conference report for 2006. The conference report cut funding for veterans’ health care by $13.5 billion over five years. However, the budget still found room for $106 billion in tax cuts for those who need it the least. The budget passed 214-211. [Roll Call 149, S 95, 04/28/2005; House Budget Committee Democratic Caucus, “Summary and Analysis of FY 2006 Budget Resolution Conference Report,” 4/28/05]

        Ryan Opposed Fiscally Responsible FY 2009 Budget With $48.1 Billion for Veterans’ Services. In 2008, Ryan voted against a budget resolution that would establish the congressional budget for FY 2009. The resolution would call for expenditures of $3.1 trillion and would allow up to $1 trillion in discretionary spending, plus $70 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and $5.8 billion for hurricane recovery. The bill would also include $48.1 billion in funding for veterans’
        269 benefits and services. The bill passed 212-207. [Roll Call 141, S 312, 03/13/2008; Congressional Quarterly; “Summary of the 2009 Democratic Budget”; House Committee on the Budget, 3/11/08]

        Ryan Opposed Budget that Included Record Increase for Veterans. In 2007, Ryan voted against the fiscal year 2008 budget conference report that began to reverse six years of Republican fiscal mismanagement, provided for middle-class tax relief and would return the budget to balance – reaching a surplus of $41 billion in 2012 – without raising taxes. The budget increased funding or veterans’ health care and services by $6.7 billion (18.3 percent) above the 2007 enacted level, and $3.6 billion above the President’s budget. According to the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the budget represented a “historic $6.7 billion increase” over the previous year’s budget. Meanwhile, the American Legion wrote, “The American Legion and its 2.8 million members applaud… the Fiscal Year 2008 Budget Resolution.” According to the Military Officers Association of America, “...the resolution makes a strong statement of Congress’s commitment to restoring national confidence that our wounded warriors will receive the kind of first-quality care and services that they have earned...” The budget also saved veterans from paying increased fees totaling $355 million in 2008 and $2.3 billion over five years. The President’s budget imposed those new enrollment fees and increases co-payments on Priority 7 and 8 veterans. The budget passed 214-209. [Roll Call 377, S 21, 05/17/2007; House Budget Committee, Conference Agreement on the FY 2008 Budget Resolution: Building on the “Six for ‘06, 5/24/07; Military Officers Association of America; American Legion; Veterans of Foreign Wars, Washington Weekly, 5/25/07]

        Ryan Opposed Historic Funding Increase For Veterans Programs. In 2007, Ryan voted against a budget that provided a $6.6 billion increase in funding for veterans programs. However, the Veterans of Foreign Wars applauded the budget, and the House and Senate leadership who were instrumental in the adoption of this historic increase. These additional resources would cover increases in the costs of health care, the VA’s increasing patient load, including veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan, and help cover the cost of forthcoming recommendations to improve military and veterans’ health care facilities and treatment. The budget passed 216-210. [Roll Call 212, S 99, 03/29/2007; VFW Washington Weekly, 4/2/07; CQ House Action Reports, No. 110-4]

        Ryan Opposed Veterans’ Health Care Funds. In 2007, Ryan voted against legislation that provided critical funding for veterans health care, including funds to enhance medical services for active duty forces, mobilized personnel and their family members and $1.7 billion for veterans’ health care priorities including maintenance at VA health care facilities like Walter Reed. The measure included: $550 million to address the maintenance backlog at VA health care facilities to prevent situations similar to those at Walter Reed; $250 million for medical administration to ensure sufficient personnel to address the rising number of veterans and to maintain a high level of service; $229 million for treating the growing number of veterans; $100 million to allow the VA to contract with private mental healthcare providers to offer veterans, including Guard and reserve members, quality and timely care; and, $62 million to speed claims processing for returning veterans. The measure passed 218-212 [Roll Call 186, H 1591, 03/23/2007; CQ House Action Reports, No. 110-3]

        Ryan Supported FY 2005 Budget Trashed by Veterans’ Groups. In 2004, Ryan voted in favor of a budget that was strongly opposed by major veterans’ organizations. A coalition of veterans groups, including the AMVETS, Disabled American Veterans, Paralyzed Veterans of America, and Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States was vehemently opposed to the bill. “Passage of the budget resolution, as presented, would be a disservice to those men and women who have served this country and who are currently serving in Iraq, Afghanistan, and around the world in our fight against terrorism,” the groups said. The budget resolution passed 215-212 [Roll Call 92, S 393, 03/25/2004; Letter to Members, 3/23/04]

        Ryan Opposed Motion To Allow Veterans With Service-Related Disabilities And 20 Years’ Honorable Service To Receive Full Disability Benefits And Full Retirement Pay. According to the Saint Paul Pioneer Press, “Voting 188 for and 217 against, the House defeated a Democratic bid to allow veterans with a service-related disability and at least 20 years’ honorable service to receive full disability benefits as well as full retirement pay. At present, most veterans must deduct disability income from retirement pay in a subtraction known as the ‘disabled veterans tax.’ The motion was offered to the 270 defense bill above, which already included GOP language phasing out the ‘tax’ for about one-third of affected veterans. If not offset elsewhere in the budget, the Democratic motion would add over $50 billion to the national debt over 10 years. A yes vote backed full, dual benefits.” Ryan voted no. [Saint Paul Pioneer Press, 11/9/03]

        Ryan Voted to Cut Funding for Veterans’ Programs, Impose Enrollment Fees. In 2003, Ryan voted for a budget that called for cutting $15 billion from veterans’ benefits, including veterans’ pensions, compensation, education and other benefits, over 10 years. The Disabled Veterans of America strongly opposed the budget, sending a letter to all members of Congress “to communicate our deep-seated outrage regarding the fiscal year 2004 budget adopted by the House Budget Committee, which would cut veterans’ programs by more than $15 billion during the next 10 years.” The GOP budget also included the President’s proposal to impose a $250 fee for enrollment in VA health care for category 7 and 8 veterans, along with a doubling of the drug co-payment for those veterans. The budget passed 215-212 [Roll Call 82, S 95, 03/21/2003; Letter from Edward R. Heath, National Commander, Disabled Veterans of America, 3/17/03]

       Paul Ryan Voted to Cut Funding for Veterans Benefits By $25 Billion, Imposed Enrollment Fees. In 2003, Paul Ryan voted for a budget that called for cutting $25 billion from veterans’ benefits, including veterans’ pensions, compensation, education and other benefits, over 10 years. The Disabled Veterans of America strongly opposed the budget, sending a letter to all members of Congress “to communicate our deep-seated outrage regarding the fiscal year 2004 budget adopted by the House Budget Committee, which would cut veterans programs by more than $15 billion during the next 10 years.” The GOP budget also included the President’s proposal to impose a $250 fee for enrollment in VA health care for category 7 and 8 veterans, along with a doubling of the drug co-payment for those veterans. The budget passed 215-212. [Roll Call 82, S 95, 03/21/2003; Letter from Edward R. Heath, National Commander, Disabled Veterans of America, 3/17/03]


        Ryan Voted Against Spending an Additional $20 Million to Prevent Suicides by Combat Veterans. In June 2011, Ryan voted against a motion to recommit the Fiscal 2012 Military Construction-VA Appropriations bill with instructions that it be reported back with an amendment to increase funding for veterans medical services for PTSD and suicide prevention by $20 million. The funds would advertise suicide-prevention assistance and services for veterans. The $20 million would be offset by reducing funding for the Department of Veteran Affairs’ information technology program by $25 million. The motion to recommit failed, 184 to 234. [Roll Call 417, H 2055, 06/14/2011; Virginian-Pilot, 6/20/11]

        GI Bill

        Ryan Opposed New GI Bill. In 2008, Ryan voted against an amendment that would create an expanded educational benefit for veterans, imposing a surtax on the very wealthy to offset the costs of the new veterans’ program and suspend implementation of seven Bush administration Medicaid regulations. The amendment appropriated $21.2 billion for domestic programs, military construction and foreign aid programs. It would provide $4.6 billion for military construction and $5.8 billion for levee building in Louisiana. The amendment would provide a permanent expansion of education benefits for post-Sept. 11 veterans, offset with 0.47 percent surtax on modified adjusted gross income above $500,000 per year for individuals and $1 million for couples. It also would temporarily extend unemployment insurance benefits and place a moratorium through March 2009 on seven Medicaid regulations proposed by the administration. It would appropriate $9.9 billion for the State Department, USAID and international food assistance. The amendment passed 256-166 [Roll Call 330, H 2642, 05/15/2008; Congressional Quarterly, Congressional Quarterly Weekly, 5/16/08]


    When you're born you get a ticket to the freak show. When you're born in America, you get a front row seat. George Carlin

    by Zwoof on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 08:46:17 PM PDT

  •  THIS Military Family Thanks President Obama (5+ / 0-)

    and stands with Democrats, because Democrats stand with us.

    My grandfather, Pilot, United States Marine Corps (Wings #12) World War I


    In the plane he flew against Germany, over France, without radar or a parachute


    My Dad, USNA graduate, pilot, intelligence officer, Captain, United States Navy


    My maternal grandfather also served in World War I, on a submarine in the North Atlantic.

    Members of my family have fought in every war since the Revolutionary War.


  •  GOPers don't support "vets" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    they support the infamous MIC and mightly wish they could do so without those pesky humans being involved at all... You know, those guys who sleep under bridges and come home all damaged. Those guys who have real medical needs which cost real money. GOPers would much rather be able to just trash the broken machines of war and build news ones in their big factories.

    America could have chosen to be the worlds doctor, or grocer. We choose instead to be her policeman. pity

    by cacamp on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 08:54:43 PM PDT

  •  only for the weapons and for the contractors-- (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    no $ for vets.
    just for the profiteers.  you know, capitalism-free-market war...

    smells like fascism.

    "You know, I haven't heard any glaciers are getting BIGGER, but that's why people watch FOX!" --steve doocy vulture/voucher 2012

    by stagemom on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 09:08:13 PM PDT

  •  I'm a Vietnam Era Veteran. Without the VA, I (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    basket, Zinman

    likely would have died a month ago from the heart attack that I had.  

    I can't afford insurance right now.  I'm in the sweet spot between social security having kicked in (at 62) and Medicare kicking in at 65.

    Never thought I'd have a heart attack, but it happened.

    I received excellent care from the VA and their veterans rep said I probably needed to come in for further testing from exposure to all sorts of bad stuff in the late 60's.

    President Obama supports Veterans and, in this case, supported me.  For that, my family and I are ever grateful.

    President Obama has never served in the military but, as Commander-in-Chief, he knows the duty he owes to those who have served.

    Romney and Ryan exhibit no comparable honor.

    •  The biggest problem with the VA is the Repubs (0+ / 0-)

      The Repub efforts to help Grover Norquist drown the government in a bathtub have instead drowned a whole bunch of veterans in the process.

      The VA is woefully underfunded and thus unable to fulfill their duty to veterans, largely because the Repubs don't want to fund it. That's right, they really don't give a crap about veterans if it might cost them some money. GOPers think profits for the MIC are great, but wounded veterans should just suck it up, tough it out, and quit their complaining.

      Eradicate magical thinking

      by Zinman on Sun Aug 19, 2012 at 12:19:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Nixon went to China... (0+ / 0-)

    It's simple, really:  When it comes to certain constituencies, you need a certain party to "cut" or otherwise degrade benefits to that constituency.

    It took Nixon to go to China.  Had a Democrat attempted such, he would have been branded a "communist" sympathizer.

    The GOP, under Bush, reduced benefits for service members... which resulted in a huge defection of "military" support for the GOP, right?  Nope.  Didn't happen.

    Flip it around:

    Bush, who started two wars, passed Patriot Act, enacted Tax Cuts for the Wealthy... couldn't significantly alter Social Security.  The Dems wouldn't let him - because Social Security is solidly in the Dem Bailiwick.

    So who was able to alter Social Security?  Democrats.  Using rhetoric from the GOP on taxes, the Dems - in the name of stimulus, led by Obama - gave a "tax cut" to American Workers.  In the form of reduced Social Security payments... but made up the cut by... linking it to the General Fund.

    Think about this:  At some point, you will have someone claiming that we need to "cut" Social Security as it contributes to the Deficit.  Anyone who even TRIES to say "well, let's just get rid of the tax cut and fund it like it was designed to be funded"... will be labelled someone who wants to Raise Taxes.

    So, what to do, what to do?  

    One of two things:  A) Cut Social Security payments (in the name of Deficit Reduction) OR B) Cut other social programs in order to "save" Social Security.

    Neat little trap, that.  And not something the GOP would ever be allowed to do because.. Social Security is in the Dem's Bailiwick.

    What do Veterans think of the parties?  Even after Bush cut active members benefits?

    Presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney leads a new poll this week showing veterans would  pick him over President Barack Obama.

    And, unlike the 2008 presidential election, when Sen. John McCain won 54 percent of the veteran vote, neither Obama nor Romney is earning an edge based off of experience (or lack thereof) in the military.

    The Gallup poll shows  58 percent of veterans prefer Romney, compared to 34 percent who support the president.

    Sure, there might be a percentage point or two to be gained by playing with the issue.  But in the end, there won't be much movement because... Veterans / Military is in the GOP Bailiwick.

    Let's pivot and look at another issue:

    Congress could be poised to pass three long-delayed free trade agreements, which promise to create jobs and help boost the anemic economy.  South Korea, Colombia and Panama all hammered out trade deals with the U.S. during President George Bush’s second term but none was able to make it through the political gauntlet on Capitol Hill.
    What what?  King George - who, let's face it, was able to ram through all sorts of evil things, wars, Patriot Act, Tax Cuts for 1%, School "Reform", Torture, Indefinite Detention.. couldn't even get some Free Trade (smaller than NAFTA) through that ol' Congress?  

    But wait - I thought the Dems were powerless to stop the GOP juggernaut?

    It's because Free Trade is a Democratic Issue.  Not a GOP one.  And the respective parties guard their constituencies and issues like a hen watching her chicks.

    It took Nixon to go to China.

    But that was a long time ago.  That issue - Free Trade - no longer belongs to the GOP.  It has't for a long time.

    Military issues?  Specifically benefits to service members? A democrat has to tread lightly.  An (R), on the other hand, is just what's needed when you want to cut benefits... because it has been hammered into the military constituency's brain that GOP = Military Support.

    One more pivot...

    Education "Reform", Charter Schools, and attacking teachers via "Testing".  

    This one was really interesting... the GOP took the issue (which didn't belong to them), ran with it.. and the "Left" howled.  No Child Left Behind was attacked, ridiculed, and portrayed as nothing more than policies which would lead to for-profit corporations getting their hands on tax payer dollars at the expense of students and teachers.

    When a party is strong enough - if it has the political capital - it CAN actually - briefly - move into territory formerly occupied by the other party.  That's what happened with NCLB.  Or, over the long hall, a party may actually seize what was former territory of the other party (Free Trade Job Off-shoring, anyone?)  NAFTA?  Panama?  South Korea?  Columbia?  Trans Pacific Partnership?

    Fast Forward:

    Democrats take control of Congress.  A Dem President is elected.  And appoints Arne Duncan as Education Secretary.  NCLB is renamed "Race To The Top".

    The outrage, previously aimed at NCLB, was all but silenced.  Because "Education" is in the Dem bailiwick.  And the Dems wanted the issue back.  Rename it, tweak it a little.. and Bingo, it moves forward.  You wouldn't want the GOP doing education reform, would you?  

    Best just to accept whatever excuses are offered up and move on.  Things will get better in the future, won't they?  Hang in there, kiddo, real reform is just around the corner.

    To Wit:  The Party which "holds" a certain Constituency is the party which can affect changes near & dear to that Constituency with the least amount of resistance, meaning there is a higher chance of success.  The other party may attempt to score political points but they will rarely be able to change the overall equation or affect perceptions & momentum on the issue / constituency.

    I voted for Change. Not Three Chiefs of Staff from Wall Street Banks. Not Bernanke, Summers, Geithner, Holder, Simpson, or a Monsanto Lobbyist. Not more Free Trade. Not more Patriot Act. Not defending Wall Street's Savvy Businessmen.

    by Johnathan Ivan on Sun Aug 19, 2012 at 07:15:34 AM PDT

  •  Two gentelmen in camoflage stopped me today as I (0+ / 0-)

    left a big box store today.  

    They wanted money to help support disabled veterans.  

    Why do they have to basically beg for money to help disabled veterans?

    Just asking.

    Psst!!!......Willard let us see your income taxes.

    by wbishop3 on Sun Aug 19, 2012 at 11:30:06 AM PDT

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