Act Was Crafted Behind Closed Doors Without The Input Of VA Accountability Advocates
Arlington, Va. – Today, Senator Johnny Isakson (R-GA), chairman of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, gave an interview in which he made several misleading statements about his bill, the Veterans First Act. In response, Dan Caldwell, Concerned Veterans for America’s (CVA) vice president for legislative and political action, issued the following statement on behalf of CVA:
“In his interview this morning, Senator Isakson implied that the drafting of the Veterans First Act was done in an open and transparent manner. This is sadly not accurate. Senator Marco Rubio and Chairman Jeff Miller – the primary sponsors of the VA Accountability Act – were clearly unaware of Isakson’s work on this bill, and even sent him a letter expressing concern that they were being shut out of negotiations on VA accountability legislation. Additionally, Isakson and the rest of the Senate VA Committee did not hold a standard public committee hearing to debate and pass the Veterans First Act, instead holding a vote off the floor of the Senate that was not open to the public. Finally, Isakson and the Congressional Budget Office have not released data about the cost of the Veterans First Act – raising further concerns that some of the original promises made around the cost of this bill cannot be kept.
“Senator Isakson’s lack of transparency, and that of other members of the Senate VA Committee, is further evidence that they realize the Veterans First Act is not a strong VA reform bill. Were the opposite true, they would have crafted this bill in a more collaborative and transparent manner.”
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Concerned Veterans for America is a non-partisan, non-profit, 501(c)(4) organization that advocates for policies that will preserve the freedom and prosperity we and our families so proudly fought and sacrificed to defend.