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Legislative


At Work on Capitol Hill T e American Legion’s Legislative Commission presides over resolutions and positions of the


organization that involve Congress, the White House, federal agencies and other government entities. Across the nation, the Legion’s Legislative Council works with lawmakers and other government offi cials in their home states and districts, and maintains lines of communication to Washington. Among the top legislative priorities this year is protecting the DoD and VA budgets. Drastic budget


reductions for DoD are currently scheduled and may increase if a diff erent solution to the defi cit crisis is not identifi ed soon. American Legion leaders and staff have worked diligently with Congress to keep out-of-pocket costs for veterans and military retirees from increasing, and to protect our national security. In the fall of 2011, a Legion task force lobbied the congressional “supercommit ee” to keep defense spending at current levels. T e Veteran Skills to Jobs Act, passed by Congress in July, makes it easier for qualifi ed veterans


to obtain licenses and certifi cations for employment with federal agencies. T e American Legion helped DoD connect with agencies, added language to the bill and pushed for its passage. T e Legion also backed the Restoring GI Bill Fairness Act, which protects eligible student veterans from unfair reductions in their VA education benefi ts while they earn degrees at colleges and universities. T e Legion also lobbied strenuously for passage of the VOW to Hire Heroes Act, which increases employment opportunities for veterans.


The Legion’s legislative agenda  Block legislation that would increase TRICARE fees, deductibles and pharmacy co-payments  Demand full funding for VA, homeland security and national defense  End the “disabled veterans tax,” which penalizes military retirees who receive VA disability benefi ts  Prevent passage of amnesty legislation for illegal immigrants  Pass an amendment that would allow Congress to protect the U.S. fl ag from physical desecration


Contact  leg@legion.org Connections


www.legion.org/legislativecapwiz.com/legion/home


2012 | T e American Legion Annual Report 7


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