Senate Republicans Betray U.S. Vets By Blocking Veterans Benefits Bill


In a shameful display of partisan obstruction, the Mitch McConnell led Senate Republicans a blocked a bill that would have improved veterans benefits.

Senate Republicans blocked the veterans bill by using a procedural maneuver to invoke the 60 vote rule. The final vote to waive the budget point of order failed, 56-41. Only two Republicans (Sen. Dean Heller and Sen. Jerry Moran) joined with Democrats on the vote.

Republicans claimed that they blocked the bill because Majority Leader Harry Reid would not allow an up or down vote on an amendment that would have attached sanctions on Iran to the bill.

Sen. Reid said, “I hope all the veterans groups have witnessed all the contortions the Republicans have done to defeat this bill. Shame on Republicans for bringing base politics into a bill to help veterans.”

The chairman of the Veterans Affairs Committee, Sen. Bernie Sanders, said,

I had hoped that at least on this issue – the need to protect and defend our veterans and their families – we could rise above the day-to-day rancor and party politics that we see here in Congress

I am going to keep fighting. I am proud that we received every Democratic vote and that two Republicans also voted with us. In the coming weeks, I will be working hard to secure three additional Republican votes, and I think we can do that.

The cost of war does not end once the last shots are fired, and the last battles are fought. When members of the military lose arms, legs and eyesight fighting in wars that Congress authorized, we have a moral obligation to make sure that those Americans receive all of the benefits that they have earned and deserve. When American soldiers die in combat, we have a moral obligation to make sure that the spouses and children they leave behind are taken care of and do not live in abject poverty.

The only message that can be taken away from today’s vote is that Senate Republicans think it is more important to deny President Obama a “win” than it is to help our nation’s veterans. The bill contained provisions that would restore the COLA for vets, and protect them from losing their benefits in the event of another government shutdown. It also would have authorized the construction of 27 new clinics and medical facilities, and it would have provided tuition assistance to post-9/11 vets.

It is the kind of legislation that used to be a no brainer, but it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the same group of Republicans who think that they shouldn’t have to pay the nation’s bills also want to renege on their obligations to our veterans.

Senate Republicans committed a disgraceful betrayal of the promise that has been made to those who put their lives on the line for this country. I hope this is a wake up call for vets who think that the Republican Party has their interests at heart.

The Republican Party doesn’t care about veterans. This vote stabbed veterans in the back, and should make every vet question why they would ever vote Republican.

27 Replies to “Senate Republicans Betray U.S. Vets By Blocking Veterans Benefits Bill”

  1. As a vet of Vietnam, and these draft dodging TP politicians that just don’t give a damn about the men that gave their lives for this great country you suck i.e. Ted the commie Cruz and the rest of the so called disgraceful tea party lot thats punishing all of us vets for protecting your rights, thats only because we stand beside the POTUS something you know nothing about because you never served. Oh by the way the only reason you wanted this Iran santions amendment added to the veterans bill was you knew it would never fly. Thank you asshats for being so un American. Next time there’s a war you go or send your family.

  2. The Republican Party and Teabaggers are a disgrace to this country. I thank all the men and women who are or were in the Military for the freedom that I continue to enjoy because of your service. Those jackasses should do the same.

  3. You know, everyone.. let’s call the Senate Republicans what they really are: Cowards.

    They basically OK’d Bush II to go to war on Iraq by false pretenses and the war in Afghanistan without paying for it, now they want to basically tell the people that survived the horrors of war ‘Screw you, all you grunts are good for is to help fuel our Military Complex Orgy’

    No. These people served our country in a time of need and to throw them under the bus is a shameful and cowardly act that must be called out for it. These people deserve better then to be nothing more then pawns in the Republicans’ scheme to basically tell President Obama to ‘kiss their old white wrinkly ass’.

  4. Send our children to war just to prove you have bigger balls but when it comes to take care of them you say no. I hate republicans and they need to be eradicated

  5. Sanctions for Iran have no place on a bill that is for our Veterans. Damn Republicans have lost any sense they had. This is a bill that politicians should agree on regardless of which party they belong to, no exceptions. Freedom is not free.

  6. In the end, the republicans in the Senate don’t have to worry about anything happening to them with this vote. People and the media will forget about it and it will die. A great example of this is the unemployment extension. People are really hurting because of it and most if not all republicans in the senate don’t get a rats ass about those people. The people of this country will continue to suffer and the GOP doesn’t care cause they know they will not lose any political capital or face any consequence because of it. Currently, there are media outlets reporting that the republican have a good chance of taking back the senate in 2014. I mean, if know you can screw the people over and make them suffer a little bit more, face no backlash or consequences for it….why would you change. If they know they can act and vote this way and still have a chance of taking back the Senate it’s a no brainier. If the GOP does take back the Senate in 2014 it’s the voters of America own fault.

  7. I am appalled and disgusted by the venal acts of the GOP. As a veteran who just recently learned that I am one of thousands of veterans that while posted at Ft. McClellan in Anniston, Alabama, I was exposed to a toxic soup of chemicals by Monsanto who’d been dumping 1935-1999. They included PCBs, TCEs, Dioxin, a principal component of agent orange. Troops trained for Military Police, the Women’s Army Corp (WAC)and Chemical and Biological training. April 1977 I arrived for three month Officer Basic, by the third week I was having health issues. The post has been declared the “most toxic site in the country”. We need the Congress to pass H.R.411 and honestly debate and pass the veterans bill. Sen. Sanders is priceless for his ability to frame the issues in such clear terms. Often it’s said, “nothing gets done until after an election cycle”. I say, any politician who can’t muster the courage to honor the nation’s obligation owed to our veterans doesn’t deserve to be in offi…

  8. ” I say any politician who can’t muster the courage to honor the nation’s obligation owed to our veterans doesn’t deserve to be in offi”
    add to that, any veteran who votes for any one of these slimy, creepy snake oil sales men had better get himself to the nearest mental hospital in fact that goes for any women who votes for anyone of them also.

  9. Easy to sit in an air conditioned office and deny the people that put their lives on the line for you to be able to enjoy your health and freedom. Get off your dead asses and do the right thing.

  10. I hope every person who is serving voluntarily takes advantage of their voting rights. Families can request mail in ballots for anyone serving out of the country. Check with your county board of elections. VOTE ALL THE NAYSAYERS OUT!

  11. Why would anyone consider entering the military when they might come home with PTSD, limbs missing, blind, with no assistance from the government they are fighting to retain. Democracy IF not A SPECTATOR sPORT!

  12. cowards! most of them refused to serve in any wars. they had no problem sending soldiers to a war with totally made up bs and now they won’t support them. why would anyone vote for these people is beyond reasoning? come on people, even you teabaggers must realize they don’t even care about you.

    what is really embarrassing and painful to see is that mccain voted against this. letting down his own fellow veterans is unforgivable.

    shame on you mccain.

  13. The Senate has lost their moral compass. It’s time for all of us Veterans to vote some of our own in. As for Macaine,you can hide behind procedural process,but you still have to look at yourself in the mirror.

  14. If it’s one thing I have learned over the last 60 years is that Republicans never do anything for you. Only to you.

  15. Once again the gop have shot us in the back, As a Marine from 65-72 and a Vietnam vet 67-68 I am appalled at how the republicans treat our veterans. Once again they have shown that politics and wealthy cronies are more important than veterans who have protected their asses.
    The most despicable act of all is that John McCain has once again turned his back on what should be his own. We should quick claim him back to Hanoi. This hasn’t been his first vote against VA funding and probably won’t be his last.
    Senators Reid and Sanders are to be commended for their continuing support of veterans. VOTE Democratic and support them.
    Semper Fi

  16. When will Secretary Hagle stand up against this injustice.
    But most importantly when is our Commander in Chief going to speak out and use his office as to this offensive act.What has happened to the unspoken oath regarding we Vet’s. We kept our word to serve and protect when we raised our right hand.It’s a slap in the face to every veteran who served this great country of ours.And for all those who gave their all.Graves all over the world. How could you not forget this.The whole world is watching.

  17. This is what I wrote to Sen.Tooomey and sent it on 2/28.2024
    Sen. Toomey, Why didn’t you vote for the bill you co-sponsored for the veterans? Is it because the Iran sanctions add-ons were not attached? You claim to support the veterans of the United States Military you vote against the bill you co-sponsored that was a hard slap in the face for veterans in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. And what you did by wanting to change the name of the VA Hospital to a fellow veteran was to put a good face on to show the veterans you support them. By voting against the bill you co-sponsor showed to me and my fellow veterans in the Unites States and more so to veterans in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania you do not support them. If you did you would have vote for the bill that you co-sponsored and not against it.
    You, Sen. Toomey could not even file your own amendment to rename the VA Hospital in Philadelphia. It was file by U.S. Senator Richard Burr (R-N.C.).

  18. You need to learn to represent the people in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania instead of representing your party. You need to have the guts to stand up to your party but as I see as you voted on this matter you don’t have the nerve to cross your party. What are you afraid of?

    Thank God this is still a democracy.


    Curtis Muffley
    E-6, PO1 (ret)

  19. We need to all stand together Veterans about this.

    They screwed the pooch. Some how the word got to get out in a massive way.

    We have how many Vet’s right now suffering let alone the down seizing that is being done. The V.A. can’t cover what they have now.

    My time in 1962-1970 in combat in country.

  20. Related Story
    “Then earlier this week, Congress forced the Pentagon to make budget cuts that increased living costs for our service members. And now the Senate can’t pass a critical and transformative bill that includes priorities that have garnered bipartisan support for years.”

    Read more:, w

    Which is why the Senate cannot pass the bill. It really does require a little reading and understanding. Can’t fund anything if there isn’t anymore money to fund with.

  21. Thanks so much for your service My father was a commander at a VFW he was a world War II vet and he has passed thank God he isn’t alive to see they way these vets are treated but the VFW AMVETS DAV AND American Legions need to stick together and tell these Republicans this is not acceptable and that they are not of a negotiation the bill should have passed with no Amendments period these men fought and died for this country I am ashamed of the GOP and the military should be screaming!

  22. A congress divided by hate and republican politics.
    Please America remember this day that the senators
    from the extreme conservative right screwed Americas finest. Please vote them out of there jobs in 2016! By the way Mitch McConnell,you should be ashamed of your service to the America
    vets. You Putz!

  23. I just learned of the toxic exposure from Ft McClellan. I did my basic training there & got sick shortly after. I agree w/all the comments. It’s sad that people are so self centered they don’t care about those who sacrificed for them.

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