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The Politics of Veterans

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Isgrimnur
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The Politics of Veterans

Post by Isgrimnur » Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:26 am

WaPo
Spring weather was lovely in the White House Rose Garden on Wednesday as President Trump was surrounded by supporters at a signing ceremony for the Mission Act, a measure designed to improve health care for veterans.
...
Not long after the veterans and politicians who had worked to secure a bipartisan agreement left the White House, Trump said he didn’t like portions of the law he had been very happy to sign. To complicate matters, the administration separately sent Congress a memo outlining objections to proposed funding measures for the new program. Those objections could lead the Department of Veterans Affairs to “cannibalize itself,” a ranking Democrat predicted.

The Mission Act consolidates seven programs allowing vets to obtain private or “community” health care coordinated by VA, creates an integrated network for the department and community care, provides hiring incentives for health professionals, expands an assistance program for caregivers of veterans and creates an infrastructure commission on modernizing VA facilities.
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But how the job gets done is now open to question because of the signing statement Trump issued after his Rose Garden statement and the administration’s opposition to certain funding measures. Previous presidents also issued signing statements to oppose portions of legislation they had signed into law. It can be a controversial action if the signing statement, like Trump’s, essentially says the president will not follow the law as passed by Congress.
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Trump’s statement said that three provisions infringe upon his presidential authority:
  • One section “purports to require the Secretary of Veterans Affairs (the “Secretary”) to obtain the approval of the chairmen of two congressional committees before expending more than $50 million of appropriated funds in a fiscal year on certain pilot programs. Under the separation of powers, the Congress may not make the approval of members of Congress a precondition to the execution of the law.”
  • Another section “would require the President to consult with members of Congress on the appointment of the members to the Asset and Infrastructure Review Commission.” Trump said he expects to confer with Congress, “but a requirement to consult with the Congress in executive decision-making violates the separation of powers, including where the Congress has vested the President alone or a department head with authority to make appointments. I will accordingly treat this provision as hortatory but not mandatory.”
  • A third section “purports to require all Federal agencies to make available to the Commission any information it considers necessary to perform its duties.” Trump reserved the right “to withhold information that could impair foreign relations, national security, the deliberative processes of the executive branch, or the performance of the President’s constitutional duties.”
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Re: The Politics of Veterans

Post by Isgrimnur » Tue Jun 26, 2018 7:54 pm

WaPo
An Air Force veteran Tuesday set himself on fire while “wearing a vest lined with fireworks and flammable devices,” officials said in an email.

The 58-year old man from Mableton, Ga., had been “disgruntled” with the Veteran Administration system, according to Commissioner Mark McDonough of the Georgia Department of Public Safety.

A Georgia State Patrol trooper quickly put out the fire with extinguisher, and the man was transported to a hospital, McDonough said. About 85 percent to 90 percent of the man’s body has been burned, according to local reports. Authorities did not identify the man or provide details on why he was unhappy with VA but said he was able to speak during transport.
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Re: The Politics of Veterans

Post by Daehawk » Sun Aug 12, 2018 5:48 pm

Im sorry if this has been posted as I dont see it. Hell I could have posted on it and not remember or find it.

Three of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Buddies Are Secretly Running the V.A
According to ProPublica, Bruce Moskowitz, a Palm Beach doctor; Ike Perlmutter, the chairman of Marvel Entertainment; and Marc Sherman, an attorney, have essentially been calling the shots at the Department of Veterans Affairs since Trump was inaugurated. What the men lack in any government or U.S. military experience they make up for in being members of the president’s club, which has apparently afforded them the opportunity to “lean on V.A. officials” and “steer policies affecting millions of Americans,” all without “any transparency, accountability, or oversight.” According to documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act and interviews with former officials, the trio speak with higher-ups at the V.A. on a daily basis, “reviewing all manner of policy and personnel decisions.” When former V.A. chief David Shulkin, whom the troika installed in 2017, was preparing to make a presentation to the president about a research effort on suicide prevention, officials had to get approval from the “Mar-a-Lago Crowd” first. “Everything needs to be run by them,” a former official told ProPublica. “They view themselves as making the decisions.” And if anyone dare resist?

Perlmutter has a powerful ally: the President of the United States. Trump and Perlmutter regularly talk on the phone and dine together when the president visits Mar-a-Lago. “On any veterans issue, the first person the president calls is Ike,” another former official said. Former administration officials say that V.A. leaders who were at odds with the Mar-a-Lago Crowd were pushed out or passed over.
Basically they tell the VA folks what to do and if they dont then their good buddy Trump fires the VA people
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Re: The Politics of Veterans

Post by LawBeefaroni » Sun Aug 12, 2018 8:12 pm

Can't even begin to explain the mental health crisis with vets. And it's getting worse every day.
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Re: The Politics of Veterans

Post by dbt1949 » Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:15 pm

THe VA pays it's civilian contractors months late as it is. ( to the point where the civilian contractors are turning me over to collectors). I'd hate to see them depending on doing that all the time. Wouldn't take long for the civilian contractors to stop taking business from them.
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Re: The Politics of Veterans

Post by Isgrimnur » Wed Dec 26, 2018 3:44 pm

Daehawk wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 5:48 pm
Im sorry if this has been posted as I dont see it. Hell I could have posted on it and not remember or find it.

Three of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Buddies Are Secretly Running the V.A

Basically they tell the VA folks what to do and if they dont then their good buddy Trump fires the VA people
Bleeding Cool, the bastion of political reporting:
The U.S. Government Accountability Office, an agency of the federal government tasked with conducting investigations on behalf of Congress, will investigate whether Marvel Entertainment Chairman Ike Perlmutter is secretly running the Department of Veterans Affairs along with other wealthy members of President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort. The agency’s investigation, which will not start until 2019, was requested by U.S. Senators including Elizabeth Warren and Brian Schatz, who referred to Perlmutter, Dr. Bruce Moskowitz, and Marc Sherman as Trump’s “cronies” in an official letter sent to the agency along with VA Inspector General Michael J. Missal back in August.
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Warren and Schatz’ letter referenced a ProPublica report from August which called Perlmutter and the others “shadow rulers” of the Department of Veterans Affairs, though Perlmutter’s association with Trump has been an ongoing focus of media attention since before the election, perhaps nowhere more thoroughly than right here at Bleeding Cool.
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After Perlmutter reportedly played a key role in ousting VA chief David Shulkin back in March, with Perlmutter and other members of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club holding up medical record reform in May, 11 members of Congress sent a letter calling out the Marvel Chairman along with Moskowitz for wielding undue influence at the government office with any official authority or government experience. After that came the ProPublica report and the Senate investigation request. And now, it seems, that investigation will come, beginning as early as next April, and with Democrats in control of the House of Representatives and endowed with subpoena power to wield against the President and his associates.

“GAO accepts your request as work that is within the scope of its authority,” a November 19th response from the agency said, according to a report from Politico. “At the current time we anticipate that staff with the required skills will be available to initiate an engagement in about five months.”
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