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Legion to Senate: Leave military COLA benefits alone

Featured in Legislative Center

American Legion National Commander Daniel M. Dellinger is calling upon the U.S. Senate to remove a provision from the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013 that would reduce cost-of-living adjustments (COLA) for military veterans aged 18-62.

"How inappropriate is it for Congress to pass a bill that will reduce the quality of life for about a million of our veterans, then go home and celebrate Christmas with their families?" Dellinger said. "The Senate is going to pass the House bill with bad provisions, just for the sake of looking bipartisan. This is a horrible idea, and if the law passes, the Legion will do everything in its power to repeal those sections that are aimed at harming veterans and their families.

"Taking away COLA benefits from our veterans will save the government $6 billion over 10 years. Congress can save that amount of money in so many different ways. They have plenty of other options to find another $6 billion to cut. Why must they force our country’s retired veterans – many of them disabled – to make do with less? The American Legion is horrified that the Senate may pass a bill today that is so unfair to those Americans who have served honorably in uniform."

While several bills have already been written that seek to restore military retirees’ pay to the same COLA that everyone else nationwide will receive, American Legion Legislative Director Louis Celli said "there is a huge difference between passing a bill and introducing one. The Legion is concerned that, once signed by the president, an attempt to repeal the COLA provision later will meet with too much opposition because Congress won’t be able to agree on replacement funding."

Dellinger said he is "absolutely sickened by the thought that the only group targeted by the budget bill to lose direct income is the American veteran, including veterans who have been medically retired from military service due to catastrophic injuries sustained in battle."

 

 

 

 

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Ron Fregien, USAF, Retired

January 13, 2014 - 10:59pm

We can say good-bye to the all volunteer force. Our active duty people will be exiting the military at the end of their enlistment and in order to maintain our military, we will have to reinstate the draft within five years. Sadly enough, our current administration has no desire to keep our military strong

Keith Borders

December 25, 2013 - 5:04pm

I have written them all. Bring on the draft, no exclusions. The all volunteer force screwed again by a bunch of politicians that has been in constant war expecially the last 12 years. Words cannot describe my anger at the COLA reductions. Broken contracts.

Smsgt Albion(Jack) Strout Ret.

December 23, 2013 - 3:31pm

Okay folks its time to take off the gloves and fight back! The same tactics that worked for the Vietnam Protesters will work for us! I know we love our country, but not its politicians. We need to practice civil disobedience, protest at the recruiter stations, picket your representatives office and lets all march on Washington. We are over two million strong and they will not be able to hide from our public spectacle. Let us follow the example of the World War 1 veterans and create a new Bonus Expeditionary Force and bring ourselves to Washington. A Marcher's Encampment on the Mall and then let them forcefully evict us. Folks this is only the beginning. They will impact us again. Those who failed to serve during Vietnam and have that mindset are now in power and will enact more damaging legislation against our military. It is time to act, start the movement for justice.I hope they are monitoring this page.

George Hallman

December 23, 2013 - 12:03pm

I sure hope our Congressional leaders have a very nice holiday, and can sleep with the nightmares of what they passed. I wonder if they can face their family and tell them what they just did to the military retirees. I sure couldn't face my family after doing something like this. I will show my support at the polls and letters to my public officials.

SSgt Clarence Scotton

December 22, 2013 - 12:46am

Am I reading all this right? I served in the Army for 16 years until, during my fifth tour in Iraq, an explosion hit me in the head and knocked me out of the Army forever. Today I am a TBI veteran 80% disabled and unable to support myself ever again (the VA said so). Will these cut backs affect my disability income? Because if so my family and I will be placed on the street and I will have to use the snow to calm my headaches. To add more salt, 16 years and 5 tours, was it all for nothing?

William A. Hall

December 21, 2013 - 4:35am

Re Omission to my last message. The sentence that I declare that I consider Paul Ryan a miserable human being, should end with "can't sleep at night."

William A. Hall

December 21, 2013 - 4:31am

I am most disappointed with Rep Paul Ryan. I contributed to his campaign and he just betrayed us. I am a non disability retired Infantry Sergeant. I served between march of 1966 and April of 1989. As this bill is currently written it does not hurt me because of my age. But how about the 45 year old guy who just spent 26 years thinking that his retirement was secure. I hope Paul Ryan, who I consider to be a miserable human being in that he sees fit to cut the military retiree but not the government civilian workers. I have simply lost faith in all of out legislators. I no longer trust any of them. I will send my political contributions to Vet organizations or the NRA, but not a dime to the Republican and Democratic thieves.

William Bowman

December 20, 2013 - 11:49am

Is anything sacred any more

Sharon Williamson

December 19, 2013 - 11:00am

Hello. I am a disabled Navy veteran. I am SO disappointed in Congress and the President and V.P. for taking the easiest most expedient way out and "throwing veterans, especially disabled veterans from wars, under the bus"! This was not necessary, but it was the quickest way to finish up so that they could go home and celebrate for the holidays. I think this is dispicable beyond words! Leaving our countrys' bravest and most patriotic people out in the cold. Our founding fathers would be so disgusted with this congress! As President Llincoln said, "With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nations' wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow and his orphan..." What more needs to be said? Thank You. Sincerely, Sharon Williamson

Daniel Nelson

December 18, 2013 - 12:43pm

I noticed that only republicans are standing shoulder to shoulder in defense of vets on this issue of cola. Please list the names of those that vote against veterans benefits. Then we can settle or difference at the polls. This is only one issue that rings of negative support of our organization, another is that some states have put restrictions on fund razors like Bingo. All of these matters need to be dealt with. Call it the bulletin board on Now hear this. Daniel Nelson USAF Retired

Daniel Nelson

December 18, 2013 - 12:55pm

I hope you got my last comment, Daniel Nelson

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