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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Spin Control

Obama on VA health changes: Never Mind

The Obama Administration is dropping a proposal that would have allowed the Veterans Affairs Department to bill a vets' insurance company for treating service-connected disabilities and injuries.

That's the word from Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., who is one of the top members of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee and a critic of the proposal.

Murray is making is portraying this change as the president listening to, and keeping faith with, veterans. 

Perhaps the president or his advisers could have saved themselves some grief by listening to veterans before trying to float the idea.

Text of Murray statement is inside the blog.

Murray to Vets: The President Listened

(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Patty Murray, a senior member of both the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee and the Senate Budget Committee, applauded President Obama’s decision not to pursue a budget proposal that would have allowed the VA to bill a veteran’s insurance company for service-connected disabilities and injuries.

 “President Obama did the right thing in dropping this proposal.  Injured veterans and their families have already paid enough of a price, they shouldn’t have to worry about the tab for service-related care.

 “The President is living up to the promise he made to our veterans.  First he provided a budget that makes historic investments in the VA.  And not only did he listen to our veterans, but he heard what they had to say.  And he changed his budget based on their concerns.  That’s change that veterans can take to the bank.

 “President Obama is right – we need to look for ways to save money.  I look forward to working with him to do that in a responsible way that doesn’t add any further sacrifice to the men and women who have served our nation.”

The Spokesman-Review's political team keeps a critical eye on local, state and national politics.