Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I'm Going To Be Blunt: Concurrent Receipt, Which Benefits Army And Armed Forces Disabled Retirees Only Passed After Much Delay.

Roy and Springfield's favorite veteran

There is a television ad currently playing in this area which implies that Roy Blunt supports terrorism by accepting money from oil companies that do business with countries that support terrorism. The implication is that one can tell the mettle of a person in part by the company he keeps.

A section of Blunt’s website (Roy’s Blog), “Veteran’s Speak Out Against Carnahan’s Dirty Attacks”, says that a “radical special interest group” (Was votevets.org the group responsible for the ad.) I do agree with the supposition that the ad is misleading.

But, even more misleading is that Roy's veterans give credit to Roy for "his leadership in passing concurrent receipt for disabled veterans...which enabled them to both their military pension and their disability compensation…Blunt saw the injustice and took the lead.” I think they are referring to this press release Roy sent out in 2003?

I hate to be so blunt, but the fact of the matter is that this bill that would benefit not only our armey disabled veterans but also disabled vets of the armed forces encountered much delay as it wound its way through the halls of congress.

The record reflects (and I looked it up) that then Speaker of the House Tom Delay, then Majority Leader Dick Armey and then Minority Whip Roy Blunt opposed the bill and would not bring it to the floor of the House of Representatives for a vote until Representative Jim Marshall from Georgia secured enough votes on a discharge petition that would have forced the hands of their House leadership. The bill was brought to the floor and easily passed.

Friends of Wisconsin DAV has this to say on the matter.

“Military retired pay is earned by virtue of a veteran’s long service to the nation; disability compensation is for service-incurred disabilities. Yet some service members who retired from the armed forces after 20 or more years of service must forfeit a portion of the retirement pay they earned through that very faithful service to receive VA compensation for service-connected disabilities.
Most nondisabled military retirees go on to pursue second careers in order to supplement their income, thereby justly enjoying a full reward for completion of a military career, along with the added reward of full pay in civilian employment. To put service-connected disabled retirees on an equal footing with nondisabled retirees, disabled retirees rated 40 percent or lower should receive full military retired pay and compensation to account for diminution of their earning capacities.

Disabled veterans should not suffer financial penalties for choosing military service as a career rather than a civilian career, especially where in all likelihood a civilian career would have involved fewer sacrifices and greater rewards. If a veteran must forfeit a dollar of retired pay for every dollar of VA disability compensation otherwise payable, our government is, in effect, compensating the veteran with nothing for the service-connected disability he or she suffered..
Washington Watch tells us about H.r.303 (Is Roy a sponsor? NO), Govtrack.us tells us about H.R.303 (Is Roy a sponsor? No), and OpenCongress.org tells us about H.r. 811(Is Roy a sponsor? No), three pieces of legislation that have been introduced in the 111th Congress and would eliminate this longstanding inequity.

It says a lot that you have to go back to 2003 to find a veteran's issue that Roy supported.

Why isn't Roy supporting H.R.303, H.R. 333 and H.R. 811?

So, what to believe? Roy's blog which conveniently neglects to tell us that Roy only voted for the bill AFTER it secured more than enough votes to pass and make his no vote irrelevant(after he fought it all the way) or guys who walked the walk and lived to tell about it?


Horse-farmer said...

I am a disabled veteran with over 20 years service, and am pissed that for the past 20 some years I got my retired pay deducted by my veteran's disability check.
Will this passage give me back pay since I retired in 1989?
I could use that amount today.
Hey Blunt, support that you bum.

Busplunge said...

As I understand it, Currently concurrent receipt only applies to those veterans with a 50% or more disability and it must be combat related.