I think this is a very appropriate question for her, after all she is on the Committee for Veteran Affairs…. I do not trust her one inch. She needs to understand in no uncertain terms that meddling with veteran benefits will lead to their ousting in the Senate. If the retirement benefits are gutted, like the Libs want, the military will sink to a level of mediocrity not seen since before WWII. No one will stay in because of the meager retirement benefits and there will be little or no brain trust. This would be catastrophic for the USA and no one in their right mind should even think about balancing the budget on the backs of the very people who VOLUNTARILY put themselves in harm’s way to protect this great land. When America turns in back on the Veterans, Then Vets will turn their backs on America. Click here for the story….
MY LETTER TO MY REPRESENTATIVE AND SENATORS and yes I sent it to Speaker John Boehner also;
I am appalled by the fact that Congress is looking to balance the federal budget on the backs of the very people who make and keep this country strong. I initially VOLUNTEERED for military service back in 1975. At that time the Federal Government had a contract with me stating that if I hung in for at least 20 years, I would have free medical and a retirement check to count on. Since then the Federal Government has “re-written” this contract many times, always at the expense of the GI’s. This habit of always sticking it to the military people who are career oriented and working for at least 20 years to be eligible for benefits when Congress has to only serve 5 years in order to become vested is outrageous. You sit in your office every day while me and tens of thousands like me, strapped a weapon on every day, willingly putting themselves in harm’s way every working day of our career and stood the line between the USA and the people who wish to do it harm. I did this as a Police Officer in the Air Force for 20+ years and now Congress is looking to cut my benefits and/or increase my premiums. Couple this and the unbelievably high taxes I pay and this will just about put me at the poverty level. I vehemently oppose any change in military retiree or future retiree’s benefits. It is my prediction that if Congress guts the military retirement benefits, you will be placing the United States Military and the DOD as a whole on the path to ruin. If cuts to retirement benefits are going to happen, then by reason, all monetary enlistment enticements must be cut also. These acts alone will cause the retention rates and enlistment rates to plummet. After all, who would volunteer to do a job that you could easily get killed doing, for little or no benefits or security for your family? I sure wouldn’t, and neither will anyone else. There are plenty of areas within the DOD that can be trimmed that are incredibly wasteful. I suggest starting there and other bloated federal offices that are in need of going on a diet, such as the IRS, the Post office, TSA and other incredibly wasteful departments before you bring the axe down on the very people who make your job possible. In conclusion, you need to be aware of the fact that there will be electoral repercussions if you pursue this course. I for one will work tirelessly for your opponent during your next election cycle. I will tirelessly inform your constituents of your actions against the veterans and retired military community. Your actions will not go un-noticed. I will post each and every vote you cast on this subject and I will endeavor to teach your constituents how to follow your votes via the several watch dog web sites at our disposal. It doesn’t matter if you are a Liberal Democrat of a Conservative Republican, if you turn your back on the vets, we will reciprocate in-kind. You will not have our support or votes.
REPLY FROM CONGRESSWOMAN Jaime Herrera Beutler: 092011
September 20, 2011
Thank you for contacting me regarding civilianizing veteran’s pensions and the military benefits package. It is an honor to represent the people of Southwest Washington and I appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts with me. America’s soldiers and veterans have made great sacrifices to protect our country’s freedoms and safety. I am grateful for their sacrifices, and I am committed to finding solutions to the problems facing our veterans and their families today. Given the current economic conditions, I fully recognize that many veterans are having a difficult time making ends meet. Many veterans relying on these programs live on fixed incomes and very tight budgets. For them, every dollar of hard-earned benefits counts in meeting basic expenses, attaining quality of life, and building a better future for themselves and those who depend on them. While no government program is immune from cuts in this fiscally trying time, I am not willing to ask veterans to take a disproportionate share of the burden. As Congress, the administration, and the Pentagon work to make good on the debt ceiling deal, they should focus on responsibly reducing wasteful military spending in a way that bolsters our economy without endangering our national security or cutting benefits to to active duty military and veterans. I place a high priority upon protecting the interests of our service members and it is essential that we keep our promises to those men and women in uniform, as well as the loved ones they leave behind. I appreciate your comments and will work hard to make sure a fair and equitable solution that protects our nation’s veterans is found as we tackle our national debt and move the United States forward.
Thank you again for contacting me on this important issue. I invite you to visit my website at www.HerrreraBeutler.house.gov for additional information or to sign up to be kept up to date on this important issue. Please do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of assistance.
Jaime Herrera Beutler
Member of Congress
SENATOR MARIA CANTWELL RESPONSE: No doubt a form letter…
SENATOR PATTY MURRAY RESPONSE: No doubt a form letter and she dodges the question and issue;
Thank you for contacting me about funding for military benefits. I appreciate hearing from you on this important matter and sincerely regret the delayed response.Government has a responsibility to spend taxpayers’ dollars wisely, but it also has a responsibility to provide certain services and guarantees to the American people. I take both of these very seriously. To ensure that we have the ability to defend our borders, maintain our infrastructure, educate our children, and more, it is imperative that we keep our financial house in order. A principal responsibility of the U.S. Congress under the Constitution is to provide for the national defense. I take this responsibility very seriously, and I am committed to and continue to support legislative efforts to maintain the effectiveness and readiness of the U.S.’s armed forces by raising our soldiers’ quality of life, improving housing conditions for military personnel and their families, and modernizing our force capabilities to effectively meet future threats.I am profoundly grateful for the service of America’s veterans and for the sacrifices they have made to defend and preserve our great nation. Please be assured that I will continue to work with my colleagues on behalf of the many veterans in the State of Washington.
Thank you again for contacting me to share your thoughts on this matter. You may also be interested in signing up for periodic updates for Washington State residents. If you are interested in subscribing to this update, please visit my website at http://cantwell.senate.gov. Please do not hesitate to contact me in the future if I can be of further assistance.
United States Senator
My comments; As you can read here, as usual she does not address my concerns and only offers a weak response and weak support. She must be defeated in 2012. I will vote for a soup can, over her……..
Thank you for contacting me regarding the recently created Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, of which I am a co-chair. I appreciate hearing from you about your priorities for this process. As you may know, on August 2, 2011, President Obama signed the Budget Control Act of 2011 into law after its bipartisan passage through Congress. Following an initial down payment of almost $1 trillion in deficit reduction through cuts to discretionary spending, this legislation created a Joint Select Committee tasked with identifying further deficit reduction of approximately $1.5 trillion. In the event the Committee is unable to produce a plan to meet that amount, immediate across-the-board cuts will be enacted that will come from both defense and non-defense spending. In accordance with the legislation, Committee members were to be appointed by Majority and Minority Leaders in each chamber of Congress. On August 10, 2011, I was asked by Senate Majority Leader Reid to co-chair the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction. I agreed to accept this role because I take the goals of this Committee seriously and because I believe that it is time for members of both parties to work together to improve our nation’s financial future. Currently, I am working with my House and Senate colleagues from both sides of the aisle to address our national debt and deficit in a balanced and bipartisan manner. I know we need to make the tough choices that put our country on a more sustainable fiscal track but I also know that we must protect the middle class, seniors, and the most vulnerable who are struggling mightily in today’s economy. I do not want to pass an unsustainable debt along to my own grandchildren and will be working tirelessly toward a bipartisan plan that reduces our deficit without neglecting the need for investment in areas that help to spur economic growth, create jobs, and promote our country’s long-term competitiveness. I appreciate hearing from you about your priorities for the Joint Select Committee and I will certainly keep the suggestions of Washingtonians in mind as I work with my colleagues to address our fiscal situation. Please continue to pass on your thoughts, as they will help me and my fellow Committee members as we take on this challenge. You can also visit http://deficitreduction.gov for further information about the work of the Joint Select Committee, and if you would like to know more about my work in the Senate, please sign up for my weekly updates at http://murray.senate.gov/updates.
United States Senator