WASHINGTON – Those who lie about military service or make false claims about receiving military medals with the intent of benefiting from those claims would be committing a crime under legislation passed by the House Wednesday.
The House’s 410-3 vote on what is known as the Stolen Valor Act came less than three months after the Supreme Court struck down the original act on the grounds that it violated First Amendment free speech rights.
The new bill attempts to get around the court ruling by making clear that it applies only in cases where people lie about a military record with the aim of obtaining payment or other benefits.
The bill states that those who misrepresent their military service with the intent of receiving something of value would be subject to up to one year in prison. Following the lines of the court ruling, it exempts from punishment those who simply wear military medals or decorations that do not belong to them.
The legislation now moves to the Senate.