Fighting for Those Who Serve Our Country
Kentucky is home to over 344,000 veterans who have risked their lives to defend our freedom. As an eleven-year veteran and West Point graduate, I personally understand the concerns and frustrations that many veterans face. I will always work on behalf of veterans and service members to ensure they get the benefits they deserve.
One problem I have worked to solve is a difference in the way that members of the active armed forces and some reservists are compensated after being wounded in action. Under current law, , the disability retirement pay for the same injury that results in the same permanent disability is calculated differently depending on whether someone is Active-Duty, Reserve or National Guard.
A Kentuckian brought this problem to my attention. Since then I’ve been working to solve the problem and equalize the benefits. A bullet does not discriminate on the battlefield and neither should we when determining the benefits that both deserve for their service and sacrifice.
I have also fought for pay raises for our active duty service members and for measures to ensure that TRICARE enrollment fees, premium deductibles, and co-pays do not increase.
During the health care debate, it was discovered that Speaker Pelosi’s bill was unclear about TRICARE coverage for veterans. A bipartisan group of colleagues led an effort to immediately fix the problem. We moved legislation to ensure that TRICARE benefits are protected under President Obama’s health care law.
Two major new benefits for veterans and their families have been passed over the past few years. The Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act established a new program for family caregivers of eligible veterans to help them, whether it be through education, support, housing assistance, or counseling services. When family members step up to take care of their loved ones who are veterans, it is only right that we assist them in these often difficult efforts. I voted in favor of this bill.
I also proudly voted for the modernization of the GI bill which provided some much needed reforms and improvements. The updated GI bill pays tuition equal to the most expensive public institution’s in-State tuition where the veteran plans to enroll. In addition to tuition, the improved bill offers monthly stipends to help pay for living expenses and the ability for some service members to transfer these benefits to a spouse or child.
We owe every current and former member of our armed forces a debt of gratitude for the service and dedication they have given to our country and the defense of our freedoms.
The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States endorsed my candidacy for Congress based on my “strong support for veterans, national security & defense, and military personnel issues.”
The board of the National Vietnam & Gulf War Veterans Coalition also unanimously voted to support my campaign for Congress.