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Sanders Questions Vets Service Organizations On Cuts In Disability Benefits

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Thursday, February 28th, 2013

Sanders Questions Vets Service Organizations on Cuts in Disability Benefits

WASHINGTON, Feb. 28 – As a Friday deadline neared in Congress’s latest budget showdown, Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today questioned veterans group leaders about a proposal that would cut the benefits of more than 3.2 million disabled veterans and more than 55 million Social Security recipients.


Sanders has led opposition in Congress to reducing benefits by adopting a so-called chained CPI changing how the consumer price index is calculated. “It would mean very significant cuts for Social Security beneficiaries as well as for disabled veterans,” Sanders said at a joint hearing of the Senate and House veterans’ affairs committees.

Sanders asked representatives of veteran service organizations for their assessment of the proposal.

Tom Tarantino, the policy chief for the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, called it “a terrible idea.” He added, “It astounds me that we keep asking veterans to sacrifice more and more.”

H. Gene Overstreet, president of the Non-Commissioned Officers Association, called it “a bad idea” and said “veterans have paid their due.”


“Unconscionable,” was how Charles Susino, the World War II veteran and national commander of the American Ex-Prisoners of War, characterized the proposal.

The proposed change in how the consumer price index is calculated would result in significantly lower annual cost-of-living adjustments for more than 3.2 million disabled veterans receiving disability compensation benefits from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs. Veterans who started receiving VA disability benefits at age 30 would have their benefits reduced by $1,425 at age 45, $2,341 at age 55 and $3,231 at age 65, according to the Congressional Budget Office. More than 55 million retirees, widows, orphans and disabled Americans on Social Security also would be affected by the switch to a so-called chained CPI.

The proposal has been advanced by House Republicans and embraced by some Democrats.
The White House has said that President Barack Obama would consider the chained CPI as a way to cut benefits by billions of dollars.


Link to article.


http://www.veteranstoday.com/2013/02/28/sanders-questions-vets-service-organizations-cuts-in-disability-benefits/

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If there are cuts to current benefits for SSA,SSD,SSI,VA and all other federal programs there will be an uproar. I think that a lot of politicians would like to sneak in a change to the CPI, but they don't have the guts to do it to current group. They will try and stick it to younger groups.

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This sure can turn into real trouble for disabled Veterans and their families.

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I think these slick idiots will try anything to save a buck even at the expense of doing this.

Time for a campaign of our own to offset it.

J

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This is the senate veterans committee hearing with Sanders. You had better listen to this.

http://www.veterans.senate.gov/press-releases.cfm?action=release.display&release_id=ac0b79a1-882f-46ae-9b88-b3388b5e0cb5

Sanders also thanked the Legion for being part of a growing coalition of seniors, labor organizations and others fighting proposed cuts in Social Security and the benefits of disabled veterans and survivors. A change in how annual cost-of-living adjustments are calculated would mean that veterans who started receiving VA disability benefits at age 30 would have their benefits reduced by $1,425 at age 45, $2,341 at age 55 and $3,231 at age 65, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

Edited by Stretch

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You know the big driver of the budget is medicare because of medical cost inflation. VA compensation small potatoes as are all the other "entitlements" excluding medicare. Even SSA could be fixed without much bloodshed. However, if government politicians agree to cut COLA that is overkill. I can't stand to hear every politician shed false tears over the plight of disabled vets, and then to know they are plotting to cut our COLA. Are they going to cut their own salary and benefits? Hell, No! I probably send at least one email a day in opposition of cuts to medicare and SSA because they lead the way to cuts for us vets. If we all send emails to out congress critters opposing cuts to COLA's for SSA that would be a good first step. If we don't oppose cuts we will probably get some back door cuts to future vets and maybe older ones as well.

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