Press conference to address shutdown’s effects

Press conference to address shutdown’s effects
National Commander Daniel Dellinger addresses a crowd in front of the barricaded National World War II Memorial. (Photo by Noel St. John)

American Legion National Commander Daniel M. Dellinger will address Legionnaires, veterans and their families during a news conference at 2 p.m. (EDT) Oct. 15 at the Indiana War Memorial. Dellinger will discuss how the government shutdown continues to negatively affect veterans and their families, and how millions of America’s veterans will stop receiving about $6 billion in benefits on Nov. 1 if a funding decision is not made.

"Imagine how will it feel to be a veteran living month to month on a VA benefits check that may not be paid in November?," Dellinger recently said in regards to the government shutdown. "We’re talking about food, shelter and electricity. We’re talking about survival for people without any safety nets. We can’t put veterans at risk of eviction, homelessness or worse."

The Department of Veterans Affairs reports that funding for veterans benefits will become exhausted within two weeks, resulting in the suspension of claims processing for compensation, pension, education, vocational rehabilitation and employment benefits, as well as the suspension of tuition and stipends for hundreds of thousands of veterans and servicemembers. Benefits payments would also be halted for disabled veterans, their surviving spouses and eligible children.

"It is now time for our government in Washington to stand with – and not against – our men and women who have served this country with honor and sacrifice," Dellinger said.

Legionnaires, veterans, military personnel and their families are encouraged to attend the news conference at the Indiana War Memorial, 431 N Meridian St., Indianapolis. The news conference will also be available on www.legion.org one hour after it concludes.

Also, the Legion will be represented at a related event in Washington, D.C., at 10 a.m. Oct. 15. More than 30 veterans service organizations are expected to come together at the National World War II Memorial to call for an end to the shutdown. During the event, Steve Gonzalez – assistant director of the Legion's Economic Division – will discuss how the shutdown has impacted veterans employment and training.

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O.A.Pro

October 15, 2013 - 11:24am

Lets quit blaming the Democrats or the Republicans and put the blame where it belongs. ON ALL OF THEM FROM THE TOP ON DOWN! Put them all in a room and lock them in until they come up with a budget. Treat them like they are treating the rest of us

E.E. Smith

October 15, 2013 - 2:04am

I have read all your comments some I agree with and some I don't. So Here is my two cents worth. I know that the government has a lot of waste, everything they put out as laws and bills has some kind of earmark that someone has put in, or they pay way too much for stuff that they buy. Why do they need all that fancy furniture, new cars and limos, private planes? Why can they not travel like everyone else? I remember when Ross Perot ran for Pres. he wanted to have an independent audit of the US Government spending. I keep hearing about transparency in our government. Well, let us see an audit of the government. The IRS has no problem doing an audit to the people of this country; I would like to see one done of them. Let’s see it start at the top and work its way all the way down the line. I would like to see what they are really spending. How about you? It is our money that they are spending and I would like to know. In my life I have watched the fighting going on in the government. When there is a democrat in the white house, the republicans cause problems, if there is a republican in office the democrats will then cause problems. The same goes in congress, if one party has the majority, the other causes the problems. I am not sure why these people cannot do what is best for the people of this fine country. If the founding fathers were alive today they would probably lead the revolution themselves. What is going on in this country today is the reason why they did what did. I know that is easy to blame one Politician or another or even the President, himself, but I believe they are all to blame in one way or another. They seem to be in it for themselves not the people of this country. I also believe that some of the problem is the people of this country are also partially the blame. We have a lot of people that don't get out and vote or don't really look at who is running for office. It is supposed to be “We the People” and somehow we have lost the idea that WE are the people and that they work for us… not to put more money in their pockets.

Mike Miskell

October 14, 2013 - 2:01pm

I think that if a budget isn't reached then it automatically goes to monthly 1/12 of last years budget and if a budget is not reached in 6 months then we have congressional elections.

T.A.K.

October 14, 2013 - 1:54pm

It's time for ALL veterans to stand up and unite. No matter your past views, you know that not one damn democrap stood with the veteans at the WWII memorial. It was Republicans. I am that disabled vet that is willing to suffer until the Hussein, Reid, and Pee-losi get off of their liberal *ssess and start acting like we are a democracy, not a socialist nation. In 2014, let's get these A-holes out of our House and Senate, along with the RINO Republicans and get some people in that want to make a positive change for the future of OUR country.

Douglas Vaughn

October 14, 2013 - 6:50pm

As part of all Veterans, you forget that Democrats have also fought and died for this country. If you wish to unit all Veterans than you must stop with the political hate speech. It is the republican Speaker of the House who was unwilling to put the clean CR up for a vote. This act alone shut the government and threatens our veteran benefits.

Shot out!

October 12, 2013 - 1:37pm

Right on the money Burns, this Nation was made great by Men and Woman, willing to give the ultimate sacrifice, to protect the very freedoms that these squalling DC bureaucrats stand on. After 22 years in the Marine Corps and trained to protect this Country from attack, who would have ever thought the greatest attack would come from our own Government. Instead of cutting salaries of the overpaid puppets of congress, Veterans are once again first on the chopping block. I didn't ask to be disabled, it was a price I was willing to accept, but to be told we can't afford to pay your benefits because we have a congress that does not know how to budget, is complete BS. Cut their salaries off and see what their reaction time is like. How many of them have ever gone without? Or know what it's like to lose fellow comrades? Did they die in vain for this Country? These are perilous time as many of you already know and we have forgotten that this Government was established for the People and by the People as our Forefathers intended it to be, not the other way around.

Danny O.

October 13, 2013 - 8:01am

my question is this? Why has the American Legion and VFW waited till the last minute to have a news confrance? Is it not a bit late to start screaming to the media now?

annr1215

October 14, 2013 - 1:45pm

Comment to Danny O. Point well taken. How about a petition to shut down legislatures, and others in DC their pay? How about a petition to do exactly what citizens did in this country just before the Constitution was enacted! How about ALL MILITARY BRANCHES, ALL MILITARY ORGANIZATIONS, AND PATRIOTIC ORGANIZATIONS BAND AND COME TOGETHER TO 'SHUTDOWN' GOVERNMENT BUREAUCRACY, LEGISLATURES, ETC. WHAT A DIFFERENCE THIS KIND OF PETITION WOULD MAKE--PEACEFULLY-OF COURSE. THANKS FOR SHARING DANNY O.

Gene Hill

October 11, 2013 - 6:45pm

The only way we will ever fix the problems in Washington is to put term limits on the congress and take away all of their benefits so they will go to Washington for the right reasons.

damn it

October 10, 2013 - 6:11pm

if the government needs to be run by veterans then lets get it done and if politicians that never done anything in their lives but attend debate class need to be kicked out of office then get it done

LaVerne Smikrud

October 10, 2013 - 8:40pm

AMEN!

Dr. Robert Plunkett

October 10, 2013 - 3:30pm

I do not hear anything about Majority Leader in the Senate, Harry Reid. The Senate has not presented a budget in the last 4 1/2 years. He should be recalled from his position. He continues to be a real bottle neck. Congress should be able to sit down and reach a compromise on the budget. And of course, our Supreme Commander is more interested in playing golf and not in providing input into the budget. I am really urked at how this Administration is running rougt shod over our Constitution and little regard for our military. Totally disgusted. I hope the Legion continues to give them hell in Washington, all parts.

Jim Raye

October 14, 2013 - 11:16am

Remember, it takes two to create this mess. Spread the blame on both parties and we might get the right outcome. I am 100% disabled and my survival ends Nov 1st. I cannot live in a make believe world that Harry Reid is the only problem.

LaVerne Smikrud

October 10, 2013 - 8:43pm

I would love to go to DC and punch a bunch of liberals right in the nose, especially the biggest liberal of all!

Douglas Vaughn

October 14, 2013 - 6:41pm

I am a proud liberal who served my country as you did. Benefits for veterans should not be a political issue. I was in the military during the first shutdown by Newt. This is no different, the House simply needs to vote on a clean resolution.

jUNE

October 11, 2013 - 6:55pm

I would love to go with you LaVerne. See you in DC on sunday.

Damn it

October 11, 2013 - 2:06pm

Take them out of office and make them work minimum wage jobs and see how they like it

S.D.LOFFREDO

October 10, 2013 - 1:46pm

Note: I wrote Republican and meant Democrat. MY BAD! But you all know what I mean. STOP THE SHUTDOWN!

S.D.LOFFREDO

October 10, 2013 - 1:41pm

This is unbelievable, Boehner and his constituents are holding out to STOP THE AFFORDABLE HEALTH CARE ACT! They don't give a damn about you and me, they only care about their party and the rich business people. Enough is Enough! Get you head out of your rear and remember there is a country to run. The Health Care Act is HEAR TO STAY AND ITS ABOUT TIME. I think it is time for all senate personal to stop receiving their pay checks! Now lets see if they would hold out any longer? Stop Crying and stand up like like men and woman that the Health Care is Here and your not going to be able to do anything about it! THIS IS GOING TO BACK FIRE ON THE REPUBLICANS PARTY. I use to be nonpartisan but I may go strict Republican and NEVER VOTE FOR A PARTY THAT ONLY CARES ABOUT THE PARTY AND NOT THE COUNTRY. STOP THIS SHUTDOWN! REPUBLICANS ARE TOTALLY AT FAULT FOR THIS AND NO ONE ELSE. THE HEALTH CARE ACT IS THE LAW AND YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO CONTINUE HURTING AMERICAN CITIZENS TO GET IT TURNED AROUND. YOU'VE LOST MY VOTES!

June

October 11, 2013 - 6:54pm

For an intelligent sounding person, how can you be so mistaken? Obama care is an unworkable law, and the American people don't want it. I want the Republicans to open the government too and forget the Obama health care package, it will destroy itself when no one signs up for it. Have you even investigated how much of your life the government will have access to if and when you sign up for this stupid idea?? Its just another attempt to take control of the people and that is something that I do not want. Socialized medicine is one step too close to Communism. I like America to remain free, don't you?

Douglas Vaughn

October 14, 2013 - 7:04pm

I would like to get rid of the middle man, insurance companies receive $470 Billion each year in administrative costs. These insurance companies in turn pay their executives millions of dollars in compensation all of which we pay. That's why they fought so hard to dilute the Affordable Care Act down. I for one believe Health Care is a right and needs to be provided to all Americans. Would you want you Veterans Benefits to be provided by a private company with share holders to please?

Jim Raye

October 14, 2013 - 11:23am

America will remain free, only with healthier people in it. No one can predict how "Obamacare" will work until it's had it's chance. Calling it communism is a huge step off the cliff.

Brian E.

October 11, 2013 - 9:17am

if you can afford the health care act you can afford to pay your doctor bills with the 200 or more a month that the insurance companys will charge you so that they can send you a bill for what they will not cover!!! you are such a dumb ass if you think yhis bill helps at all.

LaVerne Smikrud

October 10, 2013 - 8:52pm

Mr. Loffredo; You need to get your facts straight. What the Republicans are doing is trying to put a stop to excessive government spending. Nancy Pelosi said in a recent interview that there is no place left to cut. That is the biggest bunch of horse manure I've heard recently. I KNOW the government and I can absolutely guarantee you that there are lots of places where cuts can be made. I am not Republican or Democrat. I am a Patriot. I love my country with all my heart, but I am sick and tired of seeing the liberals slowly take away my rights. I am also sick of the way President Obama ignores the constitution. The "Affordable Care Act" is law only because it was passed without debate or input from the Republicans. It may be law, but laws are frequently changed. I haven't heard of one small business owner who is in favor of Obamacare.....Not One!

Douglas Vaughn

October 14, 2013 - 7:15pm

You must not know any small business people. Any business with less then 25 employees does not have to provide health coverage for their employees. When I tried to cover my whole one employee I could not find a single insurance company who would cover her for less then $400 a month, with a 50 dollar co-pay. She was by the way in good health. I just could not cover her. I believe if you ask anyone forced to get coverage on their own prior to the Affordable Care Act, you will get the same story.

J. D. Towery

October 10, 2013 - 3:57pm

Republicans are far from totally at fault. They are sending bills to the Senate to fund necessary government operations. Republicans are looking out for the future of America. Our government has to learn to operate within a budget just like most American families do. The Obama administration wants a blank check and when it runs out, then go in for a credit increase. This is unsustainable and must come to a stop. I understand your frustration, but we must take a stand for the future of our Great Nation.

Mark A. Burns

October 10, 2013 - 1:20pm

I'm tired of being treated like a damn pawn in the millionaires squabbles in Washington, D.C. You promised us if he gave the youthful parts of our lives to gladly serve and protect this great nation. Quit screwing us because you all can't do what each household does daily and that's managed our budget, pay our bills and don't borrow or force our families into something they don't want for your personal gain.

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