Friday, January 28, 2011

Bachmann asks: Do veterans really need that money?

Posted By on Fri, Jan 28, 2011 at 4:22 PM


Here we have, yet again, proof that the superstars of the Republican Tea Party's allegedly grassroots movement are simply unconcerned with the quality of life of their constituency — no matter how God-fearing or patriotic.

The latest insult comes from Rep. Michele Bachmann. In the video below, you can watch her heartfelt well-wishes for the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division before they deployed in Operation Iraqi Freedom: "We will be forever grateful for the sacrifices that you make, and are about to make to insure our nation's safety. Know full well, that the thoughts and the prayers of Minnesotans, and of a proud nation will always be with you."

What she neglected to add, though, was that while the nation would always give its thoughts and prayers, that whole part about money for their medical support needs —not so much.

Tea party favorite Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., has unveiled a plan for cutting $400 billion in federal spending that includes freezing Veterans Affairs Department health care spending and cutting veterans’ disability benefits.

Her proposed VA budget cuts would account for $4.5 billion of the savings included in the plan, posted on her official House of Representatives website.


In a statement, Bachmann said her plan is intended for discussion purposes as an example of ways to cut federal spending to make it unnecessary to increase the current $14.3 trillion limit on the amount the U.S. government can borrow.

Oh I get it. It's just an idea she's throwing out there. Like, when I ask my wife what she feels like for dinner. Chinese? Italian? Cut $4.5 billion from veterans? Whaddya think?

Wondering where she got this bright idea, which could affect at least 3,000 veterans a year? I'll give you a hint: It wasn't something she heard at a Tea Party rally in Duluth.

The two veterans’ program cuts now advocated by Bachman were included in an Oct. 28 report from the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, about ways to cut $343 billion in federal spending. The think tank’s report projects that a freeze in VA health care costs would save $2.5 billion.

The report said cutting veterans’ disability compensation for those receiving veterans’ disability income would save $1.9 billion, which is roughly the same savings now claimed by Bachmann.

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