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Letter: Ayotte fights for veterans

As a 32-year veteran and retired Navy captain, I can personally say that Sen. Kelly Ayotte is a strong voice for our nation’s veterans.

I have spoken with Ayotte on numerous occasions regarding veterans’ issues. I have found that as the wife and granddaughter of veterans, she personally understands the challenges veterans face. I have seen her stand up for veterans time after time in the Senate.

Last year, she was the only member of New Hampshire’s congressional delegation to vote against Sen. Harry Reid’s budget deal that cut pensions for military retirees. What made that law even worse is that the cuts were directed at those currently serving in the military, while federal civilian employees, such as the House and Senate staffers drafting the legislation, were exempted from similar cuts to their retirement pay. She led the fight to fix the pension cut.

When the recent VA scandal broke, she was the first member of the New Hampshire delegation to call for VA Secretary Eric Shinseki’s resignation. More importantly, she realized that the VA suffers from deep-rooted problems that will require significant management reforms to fully address.

Ayotte also backed the VA Accountability Act, which would allow the senior level bureaucrats responsible for the current wait-list falsification scandal to be fired.

Veterans can count on Ayotte to be our voice in Washington. She has a consistent track record of fighting for those who fought for our country.



Legacy Comments52

The VA has been poorly managed forever. Every President does their best to keep it funded. In fact Bush increased funding. President Obama has also extended what diseases qualify for disability. Diseases like Parkinsons, Heart Disease and Leukemia are now considered military related. And several more. So more folks have in fact applied. So when more apply to a system that is already a mess, you get this. VA did not go digital till 2013. up till then, all paperwork. We also hear about a lot of errors in processing claims. That delays things. The codes are complicated and that adds to the problem. Too many of them. We also are dealing with waste and fraud. Poor performances by employees is rewarded. Not enough VA Doctors. What is going on now is in fact criminal. Fake lists, closing down rehab vet swimming pools so employees can get raises, and a host of other health care issues is in fact killing vets. When you read that a vet was in a VA facility for 7 years before he was diagnosed, we have a major problem of neglect. And there are thousands of horror stories. It was not one thing that caused this. It stockpiled over the years. That is how we got here. So what we get now is everybody blaming everybody else. That fixes nothing. If we keep failing to fix anything, we will just see more and more govt incompetence. And this time folks are dying because of it. Unacceptable.

Bing! Bing! Binngggg!!! Ricochet Rabbit! Wabbit, please make cups 2 thru 10 Decaf.

gsec, I was under the impression that JFK was a Hawk on Viet Nam. I also was under the impression that he vowed to contain communism. The Failure of the Bay Of Pigs, construction of the Berlin Wall and the spread of Communism in Laos had a huge impact on what he thought about Viet Nam. His speeches pretty much laid out what he thought about Viet Nam and being there. That is my take of his stance on Viet Nam.

Wabbit, The Berlin Wall, which served as an island of freedom in a sea of oppression, was a feather in JFK"s cap. If you had lived in West Berlin when "The Wall" was just three months old (Nov/1961), as I did, you'd know firsthand exactly how much freedom meant to West Berliners. My father was USAF lifer, and we were the only American family living in a German neighborhood of West Berlin. Trust me when I tell you how much they loved our proverbial butts. Moreover, JFK laid the groundwork for the defeat of Communism in this region, and Ronnie's finest hour, when President Reagan told Gorbachev to "Tear down this wall!".

You just might want to relook history. JFK was trying to reduce the number of active duty military. This was not very highly thought of back then. As for the Bay of Pigs invasion, the locals were to be the backbone of the attack with support of the US. My understanding was that these "freedom fighters" were compromised even before the invasion began, and that the US had been caught with their hands in the cookie jar so to speak, so they let these people get annihilated. It wasn't until Johnson took over is when Viet Nam started to be escalated.

Just a reminder, JFK, LBJ and even Nixon weren't chicken hawks unlike W. and his gang.

Your assertion is that anyone who has not served has no business having an opinion or has no business supporting national defense or suggesting military action. That is, well, ignorant. I am not surprised though, considering the source.

I can tell by your post you're getting pretty frustrated. LOL. W. shirker. Chaney, draft dodger and they lied and took us to an unwinnable war. Even Glen Beck said liberals were right in opposing the war. I think he even apologized.

Oh My, all the offended Patriots. rotflmao! Someone name one time a Conservative actually did something for Vets besides lip service, phony photo ops and flag burning amendments.

Again Phil, you are showing your colors. Your hateful response reveals much. Yesterday it was Republicans turning on their fellow vets and now it is conservatives.

There's a difference? Your father's Republican party no longer exits. It's a shame you haven't told him.

He was a Democrat when I was growing up. He changed to Republican because in his words he was sick of the "sissys" who took over the Democrat party. But that is irrelevant, Republicans and conservatives do more to support the vets than Democrats every would or could. Obama came into office promising to deal with the issues at the VA and 6 years later they are still issues. We hear you progressives talk about CEO bonuses, now we have government workers lying to get bonuses. Where is your outrage. Many of these issues may have been going on for years but under Obama it got much worse. Of course he only knew about this when he heard it on the news. Yeah, right.....BS.

Quit blowing smoke Itsy. Answer my question. Your Fox news techniques don't cut it here.

One person, one vote. We all have equal rights to life, liberty and the "pursuit" of happiness. You may support government control over individuals versus individual rights but the backlash is coming in November.

So do you prefer John Deere or Massey-Ferguson manure spreaders?

lol...that was good, DD.

I prefer the New Holland 195 as far as manure spreaders one manure spreader enough for you????? I think not.

I was under the impression Devil Doc that the military for many years has voted Republican. I also was under the impression that as far as Presidents who have served, the score is pretty even. In the 60's, the draft dodgers were in fact Dems who were against any war. Make Love Not War. The VA budgets for every president are there for all to see. So basically, you can pretty much see the story.

The military has always been a cross-section of America. There are R's, D's, I's and those who could care less. Just like in civilian life. Budgets, btw are the purview of the Congress, no matter what the President says he wants. I served during that war ask Dick Cheney and W what they did for their country. Your view of that period in history seems clouded by smoke. LOL

Ask Clinton and Obama what they did for their country. What is your point? My post stated that the military tends to vote Republican. I was not talking about any particular period of time. Who is blowing smoke now? Why is it you lefties always twist what is said?

Phil fails to Bill Clinton had deferments. Barack Obama had done nothing for his country and still has done nothing positive for his country.

He has saved thousands of American soldiers lives, by getting us out of an unwinnable war.

Like I said, Vets will never get a better deal from Republicans. And any Vet who votes for one stabs his brother in the back.

Well, lets hope they get a voucher for private care, because under this Admin, you run the risk of dying on a waiting list....

Here you go again, talking like this only happened under Obama. Just how stupid do you think people are. This VA scandal has been going on since the '60's. It's not right now and it has not been right for a minimum of 55 years. Veterans's have been getting the shaft and forgotten except magically around election times and Memorial Day. The rest of the year no one in Congress has seen fit to do anything. This is in Congresses Lap, don't kid yourself.

Of course! Nothing is Obamas fault! Why secret wait lists and cooking the books is the norm at the VA...people have been jailed for it for decades.

I don't think many of the moderate posters on here have not criticized Obama for one thing or another. For instance, I wrote a number of posts critical of Holder and Obama for not pursuing criminal cases against Wall St, banksters. You and the other Carpers, though, have done nothing but blame Obama for everything under the sun from day 1 of his term, and even before, while your posts critical of Bush 2--still arguably the worst president in at least 100 years, were conspicuous by their absence. It's as if cause and effect miraculously stopped and started again at either (pick one) Obama's nomination, his election, or his inauguration.

The VA Budget has increased something like 235% since 9/11. The issue with the VA is not funding, it is poor management, waste and lots of fraud. Been that way for years. Nothing new here, most government depts. are incompetent. I know what the VA was like in the early 70's, as I experienced it. It was horrible then and has not changed. Do you actually believe that the VA attracts the best and the brightest? Govt pay is pretty lousy. What disturbs me is the abuse by the employees. Criminal in fact. When you have this crisis, you have to do something right away. Get the Vets immediate care before more die. President Obama does not act, he reacts and seems surprised when these things happen.

What a terrible thing to say. Hateful as well. My dad was a war hero and at 93 he still votes and he does NOT vote for Democrats. He holds the Distinguished Flying Cross, Purple Heart and several other medals. He DOES NOT stab his fellow vets in the back! What is your issue?

Well, the draft dodgers were being drafted because they were too poor to go to college or able to get 11 deferments like Cheney. I doubt they were Democrats if they bothered to vote at all because as I am sure you know, the Democrats "started" the war and were running the country and the war. You must also remember the "68 Dem convention in Chicago, which was destroyed by the anti-war crowd. "Make love not war" Come on, you have to know more about 60's history than just a few Woodstock news reels.

Are you that uninformed Tillie, or do you just keep spinning the truth? Cheney got 5 deferments not 11. The same amount of deferments as Joe Biden got. But I guess in your world it is okay that Biden got deferments because he is a Dem. You are so dishonest.

Excuse me I made a mistake, Of course that makes all the difference, 5 instead of 11. Four because he was a student no less. Just like I said. The difference with Biden is he is not a war monger who sends other people's children of to die in phony wars, when he took every loop hole he could find not to go himself.

Kennedy and LBJ drafted people to fight in their phoney war...that makes all the difference..

oh contraire! JFK wanted nothing to do with Vietnam. LBJ or I should say Ladybird Johnson held major amounts of stock in Huey, General Motors, which were at that time not doing well. After LBJ took office guess what? We escalated Vietnam and those companies made major profits. Can anyone say Halliburton and Iraq for Cheney and company?

Ahhh, but the question it is OK for Biden because he never supported wars but it is NOT OK for Cheney because he supported wars? Obama treats the military and both of the Clintons treated the military piss poor. Your points are moot, the point of this letter was that Ayotte fights for veterans. She does, her husband is a veteran as well. Stop deflecting and address the subject.

If you have a problem with sticking to the subject, you are in the wrong place. I was replying to Rabbit, but that is ok, you can stick your nose in as usual. Cheney didn't just "support" the war, he planned it. So Ayotte's husband is a veteran so what? Half my family are veterans and Beau Biden is a veteran. "Do you want to name all the veterans you know? As a Chaney lover, you belong to a very small group.

Let me attempt to answer that question for you. Neither Obama or Clinton treated the military poorly, that is just another thing you have made up. On the contrary, while backlogs have increased under Obama, there is a reason. After 10 years of war in Iraq/Afghanistan VA claims have risen from approx 800,000 in 2008 to over 1.4 million in starting in 2010. The processing time under Obama has been streamlined but the number of claims has ballooned. Now for Cheney, he has always beaten the military drum while doing all he could to avoid actually serving himself. Biden on the other hand has never shown a propensity for military action regardless of what he did to avoid service himself. So frankly if you don't support the idea of war for yourself it just seems hypocritical to advocate for it. The letter should have been Ayotte fights for who she is told to, this is an election cycle. The one time that Veterans really are important. To simplify it, democrats probably were draft dodgers, while mommy and daddy with their money arranged deferments and make believe service. (as in GWB and his mystery disappearance from service.) BTW - the baby boomers were the result of servicemen coming home, so it's probably hard to find someone whose parent or grandparent wasn't a veteran.

Geoffy, Hundreds of public servants scammed the system and made big bonuses. Where is that outrage that you have towards private sector people getting bonuses, CEO bonuses, etc? Your suggestion that a person who did not serve is not allowed to express their opinion on military action is both childish and ridiculous. Where and when did you serve GCarson? The GWB record is clean and to bring that up again is just a deflection from criticism of Obama. Please provide solid proof that "daddy with his money" got GWB a deferment. Yeah, my dad is a 94 year old war hero and he often says: "If I had known that liberals were going to ruin this country, I would have not been so inclined to serve" and "I often wonder what I fought for, people today as such weaklings and so lazy". And you talk about "hypocritical", look in the mirror Geoffy.

Also when I make a factual error, I will admit it. My opinions are my own and need not to be explained to anyone. When you, Itsa write something that is incorrect and it brought to your attention, you don't own up to it and just ignore the whole subject. BPR is so far over the top, it doesn't matter what he says.

tillie, Your history in this forum do not support your claim to be so forthcoming. More often than not, you've got the pedal to metal, flying at 100 mph...down the wrong road. Fact.

Untrue, her Nash Rambler only goes 35 MPH. But she is on the wrong road.

Bill Clinton could not be reached for comment....

And so does Shaheen. The difference is, Ayotte belongs to a party who, as a whole, could care less about Vets. Veterans will never get a better deal from Republicans, the party of draft dodgers and shirkers.

This is not political. Your post stereotypes Republicans as not caring about veterans and being a "party of draft dodgers and shirkers". Most veterans I know are Republicans. This reminds me of the post calling Reoublicans racists, misogynists and homophobes. Which party preaches diversity and tolerance?

Nice try Itsa, Most vets I know are registered INDEPENDENTS. When I served, I voted mostly Republican because during that time the Repubs did a lot for the Military. In the late 90's I saw the Repubs start to change. What I saw overall was a party that wanted to destroy the middle class, I saw the party start to not cooperate with anyone who disagreed with their position ie; no compromise. This in turn put and many of my contemporaries to change are affiliation from Repub, to Independent. The Repubs now are even worse, overall and that is a real shame. Ayotte talks out both sides of her mouth. What has she done for any veteran in NH? She talks a good game but in my opinion, she is nothing more than a paid mouthpiece for the GOP.

In the late 90's? Please explain to us how the Democrats compromised on health care? How they want to compromise on immigration? How Harry Reid has compromised and allowed up and down votes on numerous bills? Has Obama not declared that Republican initiatives are "dead on arrival". Who "pays" Ayotte to be a mouthpiece? Who wants to "destroy the middle class"? It seems as if Obama has done a nice job of doing that with 6 miserable years of economy where he keeps supporting things that increase the deficit and kills jobs. No compromise? Ever hear of Reid, Pelosi or Obama?

Lets see. Hillary tries to force healthcare down our throats. The difference that time was that she never asked for any input from anyone across the isle. Fast forward to three years ago, every time the president asked for input from the across the isle, all he was silence or refusal to recommend anything. Ever hear of we will do what ever possible to make Obama a one term president, or If Obama is for it, then we are against it? That, in any context, constitutes TREASON! So please spare us your false indignation.

That is NOT "treason". Harry Reid announced that if Romney was elected that he would do everything in power to not cooperate with him. Democrats trashed Bush for 8 years, undermining him at every turn. Making Onama a one term president was about stopping his lousy and now proven lousy policies. Here is what the Constitution says about "treason" "Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court. The Congress shall have Power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of the Person attainted."

The 6 years Bush Jr. had Republican majorities in the house and senate allowed him unprecedented powers that ultimately caused our present economy and the wreck in the Middle East, and does "my way or the highway" during these 6 years mean anything? Oh wait, the Bush Jr crowd says that's ok. You need to first acknowledge that Bush Jr was totally wrong about virtually every policy he tried to do. Instead, you defect, complain without any facts, just opinions. Please spare me your false indignation. And this is the true definition of treason:Full Definition of TREASON 1: the betrayal of a trust : treachery 2: the offense of attempting by overt acts to overthrow the government of the state to which the offender owes allegiance or to kill or personally injure the sovereign or the sovereign's family. Now tell me how the obstructionism against Obama, thus the US as whole shown by the Repubs don't measure up?

The only deflecting going on here are the folks who think Bush is still in office. That is all you talk about. You cannot discuss any issues. All ya want is more spending. You refuse to evaluate President Obama. Your under the impression that he has been given more to deal with than any other President. What has he done with what he inherited? You offer nothing in the way of solutions.

The truth lies elsewhere than in this comment

Bestie, you are so correct!

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