Since Elise Stefanik will not talk to, meet with, or give other than a boilerplate response to anyone who expresses an opinion different than hers, I have been keeping track of her votes and actions.
Two days ago, I received a survey from her touting her strong support for Veteran’s Affairs benefits. It is distressing that yesterday she voted against the Honoring Our PACT Act of 2021, H.R. 3967, along with the likes of Marjorie Taylor Greene, Loren Bobert, Jim Jordan, Kevin McCarthy and a host of right-wing oppositional Republicans. Luckily her vote did not defeat this bill from moving on.
Soldiers returning from the Gulf War, Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria have been exposed to military burn pits which have left many with respiratory illness and cancer. The fight to get benefits for these conditions, which were not recognized as war-related, has been difficult.
Yesterday in a statement by the staff of Elise Stefanik, her reason for opposing this bill was because it would take too long to get benefits. On the contrary, I suggest that having these illnesses recognized as a consequence of wartime service should simplify the process.
Just in the past month or two she has also tried to defeat a bill to automatically enroll new veterans in the VA health system with the option to opt out. Also on Elise’s attempted cut list was a bill to give National Guard pro-rated educational benefits for times of active duty or required training. Seems fair, doesn’t it?
When you vote in November, please vote for someone who sincerely supports our troops and veterans rather than someone keen on becoming a big Washington player in the Republican party. ####
Kathie Labombard (- Letters to the editor Press-Republican, Plattsburgh, NY March 8, 2022)