Wendy Rogers, Martha McSally Arizona’s Women Warriors for Congress

It was a pleasant surprise to see both Martha McSally and Wendy Rogers earn some national media attention in the Washington Post as female vets running for Congress.

Although 2012 was not a good year for Republican candidates (presidential election years typcially turn out less informed voters), many political experts believe that 2014 will be a great year for candidates in a red state like Arizona. Ann Kirkpatrick, Ron Barber and Kyrsten Sinema’s political career days are numbered as credible, well-funded candidates like Wendy Rogers, Martha McSally and Andy Tobin continue to gain momentum.

But this post is not about my thoughts. Rather, I’d like to repost the article that appeared in the Washington Post about Wendy Rogers and Martha McSally. Please retweet and share this with others working hard to replace the leftists in those districts.

Here’s the article:

Next mission for female vets: Storming the halls of Congress (link)

As one of the first 100 female pilots in the Air Force, Wendy Rogers, a retired lieutenant colonel turned congressional candidate, is familiar with being part of an elite group of women.

But if she is successful this November in her bid to unseat Arizona Democrat Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, Rogers will be part of an even smaller club: female military veterans who are members of Congress.

“Women vets have a unique perspective,” said Rogers, a Republican who ran unsuccessfully in 2012. “We have the nurturing and the compassion components uniquely blended into the service to country, mission-minded outlook.”

There are 1,483,600 female veterans in the United States, according to the Center for Second Service at George Washington University. Five of them have served as members of Congress. Currently two female veterans , Reps. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii), are members of the House..

At least a dozen female veterans are running for Congress in 2014, perhaps the most ever, experts say.

Although some candidates are more viable than others, the rising number of willing female vets is encouraging, says Debbie Walsh, director of the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University.

“They have a commitment to public service, running for office is an extension of that service,” Walsh said, noting that her group has just begun to keep track of female vets running in this cycle. “This has been a great credential for men who run for office, I think for women it could be an even more powerful credential.”

Suzanne Patrick, a retired commander in the Navy Reserves and Democratic candidate in Virginia’s military-centric 2nd Congressional District, said her military experience is a must.

“Being a female veteran in the second district of Virginia, brings an overwhelming advantage, I feel, to the campaign,” she said. “This is the largest military district in the country.”

She added, “The 35 years of experience in dealing with the Navy and the military that I have is a formidable asset for this district.”

Among the reasons for the increase in female veterans running for Congress are the number of women now serving in the Armed Forces, the expansion of opportunities for women inside the military and two long wars, said Seth Lynn, director of the Center for Second Service.

“It’s that commitment to service, it’s humbling and it’s really inspiring to a lot of people,” he said.

Gabbard, who was elected to the House in 2012, said that adding more women veterans to the congressional ranks would be “very significant,” particularly because so few men or women of this generation have chosen to serve in the military. She said female vets running for office should emphasize their service.

“Don’t shy away from talking about your service and how it’s impacted your life in every respect,” she said.

Last year, about 10 female vets competed in general election contests for Congress, according to Lynn’s group. But the number of female vets to win congressional seats has grown very slowly.

The first, Catherine Small Long, a Navy veteran, served only one term in 1985 after winning an election to fill her late husband’s seat. Then came former Rep. Heather Wilson (R-N.M.), the first woman to command Basic Cadet Training, who served in the House from 1998 to 2008, followed by Rep. Sandy Adams (R-Fla.) who served a single term from 2011-2013.

Martha McSally, a retired Air Force Colonel is running for the second time against Arizona Democrat Rep. Ron Barber. In 2012, McSally lost a close race to Barber in the special election to replace former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D), who resigned after being seriously wounded by a gunman who opened fire at a event the congresswoman was holding at a shopping center near Tuscon. Barber is a former aide to Giffords.

McSally said her military career has more than prepared her for the rigors of elected office – and not just from a leadership perspective.

“Politics is not for the faint of heart and in a campaign you go through a lot of character assassination and lies and people making things up about you, and it can be pretty challenging to some people,” she said. “Being a woman in the military and breaking through the barriers that I have, I’ve been through a lot of that already.”

As Congress grapples with how to prosecute sexual assaults and the chain of command in the military, the addition of more women who have experience in the Armed Forces will add unique and necessary voices to the debate, McSally said.

“Having been in the chain of command and a commander, seeing the leadership basically fail on this issue, instead of getting talking points from staff you can speak first hand from your experiences,” she said, noting that as the first female pilot to fly in combat she had broken some glass ceilings much to the dismay of some in the military.

Lynn and Walsh said given the rising interest among female veterans to get into politics, they plan to team up for the next cycle to offer a training program for those who want to run for elected office. A near-even number of Democratic and Republican female veterans are running for office.

That bipartisanship is something Rogers said she hopes to carry into a divided House, should she win her race.

“When I get to Congress, the women veterans are going to be the first ones I look up and go have lunch with irrespective of their party of affiliation,” Rogers said. “Because there is a bond, there is an understanding.”

Arizona honors the legendary Tuskegee Airmen

ImageBill sponsored by Senator Melvin becomes Law

(Phoenix, State Capitol)—-The fourth Thursday of March each year will now be Tuskegee Airmen Commemoration Day in Arizona. Governor Janice K. Brewer made that official at a ceremony at the State Capitol on September 26, after signing SB 1128 into law.

The bill was sponsored by Senator Al Melvin of Tucson. It sets aside one day each year to honor the achievements of the Tuskegee Airmen, an Army Air Corps program to train African Americans to fly and maintain combat aircraft. The Tuskegee Airmen overcame segregation and prejudice to become one of the most highly respected fighter groups of World War II.

The Arizona Chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen Inc. says nine surviving Tuskegee Airmen have Arizona ties. Six of those men attended a ceremony September 26 at the Capitol to celebrate the new law. Governor Brewer signed the bill into law at the ceremony and Senator Melvin spoke about why he decided to sponsor the bill to create a Tuskegee Airmen Commemoration Day in Arizona.

“Edmund Burke during the Revolutionary War said, ‘The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing’”, said Senator Melvin. “Obviously these airmen stepped up and helped the United States win that war.”

 

Maricopa GOP Chair Rallies LD Censures

To all Arizona County and LD Republican Committee Chairmen -
Below is the front page article of the July 15 Arizona Capitol Times. I want to express my appreciation to those courageous and principled County and LD Republican Committees who have already conducted votes of “censure” and/or “no confidence.”
Jan Brewer, the legislators and their crony capitalist friends that support ObamaCare and Medicaid expansion have betrayed Americans, Arizona Republicans and the Republican Party Platform.  Their lack of ethics, integrity and egregious acts are motivated by only two things – greed and the lust for power – at the expense of hard working tax paying Americans.
The law was expected to cost $898 billion over the first decade when the bill was first passed, but this year the Congressional Budget Office revised that estimate to $1.85 trillion.  Money that will have to be borrowed from the Chinese or printed in the backroom of the Federal Reserve.  Latest polls indicate a majority of Americans are opposed to ObamaCare and Medicaid expansion with an overwhelming majority of Republicans in opposition.
During the past six months, we did everything we could to make a solid argument against ObamaCare and Medicaid expansion, we tried to reason with these people and even tried to make them see the light.  Unfortunately, our lobbying efforts fell on deaf ears and without success.
During one of Ronald Reagan’s difficult political battles he said,
               ”When you can’t make them see the light, make them feel the heat.”
I’m asking all the County and LD Republican Committees to make these people feel the heat by passing public censures for their actions.  They are elitists who think what they have done should be forgiven. They are mistaken.  We are not going to be able to defeat all of them, but we can defeat a majority of them in the 2014 Primary Election.
You can go to “MCRC Briefs” and get examples of public censures that have already been passed.  http://briefs.maricopagop.org/  Just type “censure” in the search field on the left.
Warmest regards,
 A. J. LaFaro
Chairman, Maricopa County Republican Committee
P.S.  Please encourage all of your PCs to keep up their daily efforts in getting petition signatures for www.urapc.org  Getting ObamaCare and Medicaid expansion on the November 2014 ballot will be historic for Arizona’s grassroots conservatives.

Pelosi’s PAC runs kitchen-themed ad against first female combat fighter pilot

By Mary Katherine Ham courtesy of HotAir.com

The first female combat pilot in U.S. military history would seem an unlikely target for a kitchen-themed attack ad, and yet that’s exactly what Nancy Pelosi’s House Majority PAC and Rep. Ron Barber have cooked up for Martha McSally, a retired Air Force colonel and pioneering A-10 pilot.

“Wall St. and Martha McSally—here’s what they’ve got cooking,” a female voiceover says as well-worn recipe cards pop out of a recipe box against a backdrop of fresh groceries. The ad features a photo of McSally on a recipe card alongside scribbled accusations like, “raise retirement age” and “essentially end Medicare.” The ad concludes, “McSally and Wall St.— a recipe for disaster.”

McSally, for her part, calls the accusations false and the ad’s theme “laughable.”

“The fact that they use this theme of Martha McSally in a kitchen cooking up recipes is…overtly sexist and insulting to any woman, but it certainly doesn’t fit specifically with me,” she said in a phone interview. “For crying out loud, I served 26 years in the military. I was too busy shooting 30 mm out of my A-10 at the Taliban and al Qaeda to spend any time in a kitchen.”

Continue reading at HotAir

Weiers Asks Cruz To Repudiate Endorsement From Top Supporter

Cruz Supporter Wants To Shut Down Luke Air Force Base

(GLENDALE, AZ) You can tell a lot about a person by the company they keep. One of the people Manuel Cruz proudly touts as an endorser is former State Senator Kyrsten Sinema. While many know about her far left politics, few know that she wants to close down Luke Air Force Base. Here is what she told the Arizona Republic:

I do not support our country’s trend of expanding and increasing militarization. The U.S. military spends more money on weaponry and equipment than many countries spend altogether. The money spent on planes that are too heavy to fly, missile systems that don’t work, and weaponry in numbers too large ever to be used should be used to create useful jobs for working people. For this reason, I do not support keeping Luke Air Force Base open.- Kyrsten Sinema

Cruz is aware of Sinema’s outlandish beliefs yet he still proudly lists her endorsement on his website. That’s because Cruz is a Vice-Chairman of the Arizona Democratic Party, and when he isn’t trying to get himself elected Mine Inspector or Mayor, he is trying to get liberals like Barack Obama and Kyrsten Sinema elected to office.

Weiers said, “Extreme partisanship prevents Mr. Cruz from distancing himself from politicians who would devastate Glendale. What is even more troubling is that Ms. Sinema is seeking a seat in Congress, giving her the ability to start making good on her threat to close Luke. If Mr. Cruz is serious about saving jobs in Glendale and preserving Luke Air Force Base, then he needs to publicly denounce Sinema’s statement and repudiate her endorsement.”

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NRCC Releases New Ad for Martha McSally in AZ-02

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Please support Martha’s efforts by visiting her website at http://mcsallyforcongress.com/

Does Ron Barber Support Obama Bullying Contractors to Illegally Keeping Quiet on Massive Layoffs?

NRCC

Dems Offer Taxpayer Dollars to Cover Legal Fees if Defense Contractors Don’t Send Pink Slips 

WASHINGTON — After 43 straight months of unemployment above 8.0 percent, America now faces even more devastating job losses due to across-the-board defense cuts, and contractors are legally required to warn of these imminent layoffs. Does Ron Barber agree with Obama’s attempt to illegally cover up the impact on defense jobs and make taxpayers foot the legal fees?

“Ron Barber thinks he can have his cake and eat it too, championing Obama’s job-killing policies and then covering up their devastating effects on the job market,” said NRCC Communications Director Paul Lindsay. “Barber and his party’s politically-motivated agenda is not only unsustainable, it’s motivated by their desperate attempts to deceive the public.”

Under law, defense contractors have to send notice of their plans to lay off workers. This comes as Democrats refuse to stop the looming tax hikes that will devastate small businesses:

“The White House on Friday told government contractors worried about fiscal cliff spending cuts to hold off on warning employees about possible layoffs. 

“The government said it would cover legal costs if contractors are forced to slash their payrolls because of the looming $109 billion in automatic cuts next year and are alleged to have violated the WARN Act.” (Jeanne Sahadi, “White House to Contractors: Hold Off on Layoff Warnings,” CNN, 9/28/2012)

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Senator McCain Calls Carmona Attack: “The Kind of Politics Arizonans Are Sick and Tired of”

Jeff Flake

Democrat’s attack won’t help a single veteran get better care

PHOENIX – Democrat Richard Carmona launched a desperate negative ad today accusing Jeff Flake of voting against our nation’s veterans and servicemen and women. United States Senator John McCain, a highly-decorated Vietnam veteran and former prisoner of war, responded to the charge, saying:

“Dr. Carmona’s false and negative attack on Jeff Flake is exactly the kind of politics that Arizonans are sick and tired of. These kinds of attacks aren’t going to help a single Arizona veteran get better care. I’ve worked with Jeff Flake on veterans issues for 12 years, so I know first hand that his commitment to Arizona veterans is strong. I look forward to working with him in the U.S. Senate to further advocate for the men and women who have served our nation.”

Arizona’s Jeff Flake has a strong record of standing up for our nation’s veterans and servicemen and women, and that’s a record he will continue in the Senate. Below is a sampling of freestanding pro-veteran legislation that he has supported during his time in Congress. 

107th Congress

·      HR 4514 – Veterans’ Major Medical Facilities Construction Act of 2002

·      HR 4085 – Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2002

·      HR 4015 – Jobs for Veterans Act

·      HR 2540 – Veterans’ Compensation Rate Amendments of 2001, a bill that increased rates of compensation for certain veterans and their dependents.

·      HR 1696 – To expedite the construction of the World War II memorial in the District of Columbia

·      HR 1291 – Veterans Education and Benefits Expansion Act of 2001

·      HR 811— Veterans Hospital Emergency Repair Act

·      HR 801 — Veterans’ Survivor Benefits Improvements Act of 2001

108th Congress

·      S 1156 — Veterans Health Care, Capital Asset, and Business Improvement Act of 2003, an omnibus-type bill that enhanced health care authorities for veterans, authorized projects and new facilities, and enhanced personnel matters within the VA.

·      H Con Res 409 – Recognizing with humble gratitude the more than 16,000,000 veterans who served in the United States Armed Forces during World War II and the Americans whosupported the war effort on the home front and celebrating the completion of the National World War II Memorial on the National Mall in the District of Columbia

·      H Con Res 212 — Recognizing and Supporting the Goals and Ideals of the Year of the Korean War Veteran, and for other purposes

·      H J Res 91– Recognizing the 60th anniversary of the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944

·      HR 4231 — Department of Veterans Affairs Nurse Recruitment and Retention Act of 2004

·      HR 4175 — Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2004

·      HR 2297 – Veterans Benefits Act of 2003

·      HR 1911 – To amend title 38, United States Code, to enhance cooperation and the sharing of resourcesbetween the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense

·      HR 1720 – Veterans Health Care Facilities Capital Improvement Act

·      HR 1516 — National Cemetery Expansion Act of 2003, which directed the Secretary of the VA to establish six new national cemeteries.

·      HR 1460 — Veterans Entrepreneurship and Benefits Improvement Act of 2003, which would have created preferences for veteran-owned businesses within the SBA, among other provisions.

·      HR 1257 — Selected Reserve Home Loan Equity Act, which would have made permanent the authority for individuals who complete six years of service in the Selected Reserve to receive home loans guaranteed, insured, or made through the Department of Veterans Affairs.

·      HR 100 — Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, which revised provisions with respect to certain civil protections and rights afforded to service members while on active-duty assignment.

109th Congress

·      S 1235 — Veterans’ Housing Opportunity and Benefits Improvement Act of 2006

·      H Res 1070 — Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that Members of the House should actively engage with employers and the American public at large to encourage the hiring of members and former members of the Armed Forces who were wounded in service and are facing a transition to civilian life.

·      HR 6314 — Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program Extension

·      HR 5037 — Respect for America’s Fallen Heroes Act, which protects funerals at national cemeteriesfrom protests.

·      HR 4843 — Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2006

·      HR 4061 — Department of Veterans Affairs Information Technology Management Improvement Act of 2005,which would have ensured that the CIO of the VA received all proper resources for IT systems, ensuring that veterans were being served by the best technology.

·      HR 3200 — Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance Enhancement Act of 2005, which made permanent authorities previously passed by Congress that increased the maximum coverage under the Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance and the Veterans’ Group Life Insurance programs from $250,000 to $400,000.

110th Congress

·      H Res 1335 — Celebrating the 120-year partnership between the Government and State veterans homes

·      H Res 1291 — Expressing gratitude for the contributions of the American GI Forum on its 60th anniversary

·      H Res 1098 — Supporting the goals and ideals of the Year of the American Veteran.

·      H Res 963 — Supporting the goals and ideals of National Salute to Hospitalized Veterans Week, and for other purposes

·      H Res 790 — Commending the people of the State of Washington for showing their support for the needs of the State of Washington’s veterans and encouraging residents of other States to pursue creative ways to show their own support for veterans

·      H Res 680 — Condemning the actions of September 7, 2007, resulting in damage to the Vietnam Veterans War Memorial

·      H Con Res 336 — Honoring the sacrifices and contributions made by disabled American veterans

·      H Con Res 5 — Latest Title: Expressing support for the designation and goals of “Hire a Veteran Week” and encouraging the President to issue a proclamation supporting those goals

·      HR 6445 — Veterans’ Health Care Policy Enhancement Act of 2008, would have enhanced several benefits for various veterans.

·      HR 5892 — Veterans Disability Benefits Claims Modernization Act of 2008, the bill would have increased the number of veterans eligible for disability compensation by modifying the requirements for eligibility, and contained some other provisions.

·      HR 5856 — Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Facility Authorization and Lease Act of 2008

·      HR 5826 — Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2008

·      HR 4169 — American Braille Flag Memorial Act, would have authorized the Secretary of the Army to place in Arlington National Cemetery an American Braille tactile flag honoring blind members of the Armed Forces, veterans, and other Americans.

·      HR 3819 — Veterans Emergency Care Fairness Act of 2008, which would have required certain veterans to be reimbursed for the cost of emergency treatment received in a non-VA facility, and other provisions.

·      HR 2239 — Early Access to Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Benefits Act, which would have extended eligibility for vocational rehabilitation benefits to disabled servicemembers not yet discharged from the military but who are likely to be discharged because of their condition.

·      HR 2199 — Traumatic Brain Injury Health Enhancement and Long-Term Support Act of 2007

·      HR 2192 – To establish an Ombudsman within the Department of Veterans Affairs, which would have established within the VHA an Office of the Ombudsman, responsible for serving as a last resort for veterans’ health care and benefits complaints and issues that cannot be resolved at a local or regional level and maintaining a public website with contact information for each patient advocate at each VA medical center.

·      HR 1538 — Dignified Treatment of Wounded Warriors Act, would have established policy for care, management, and transition of servicemembers with serious injuries or illnesses.

·      HR 1527 — Rural Veterans Access to Care Act, would have provided greater access to care forveterans in rural areas.

·      HR 1470 — Chiropractic Care Available to All Veterans Act

·      HR 1284 — Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2007

·      HR 797 – Dr. James Allen Veteran Vision Equity Act of 2007, which provided veterans who are blind in one eye and starting to go blind in the other eye eligibility for benefits right away, instead of waiting for them to go totally blind.

·      HR 612 — Returning Servicemember VA Healthcare Insurance Act of 2007, which would have enhanced medical care for combat veterans.

·      HR 327 — Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act, this bill created policies to help deal with suicide amongst veterans.

·      HR 67 — Veterans Outreach Improvement Act of 2007, this bill sought to improve coordination of outreach efforts within the VA.

111th Congress

·      S 3860 — A bill to require reports on the management of Arlington National Cemetery.

·      S 1963 — Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act of 2010, which enhanced policy for caregiver support, female veterans, mental health care, and other matters.

·      H Res 1746 — Recognizing and supporting the efforts of Welcome Back Veterans to augment the services provided by the Departments of Defense and Veterans’ Affairs in providing timely and world-class care for veterans and members of the ArmedForces suffering from PTSD and related psychiatric disorders

·      H Res 1385 — Recognizing and honoring the courage and sacrifice of the members of the Armed Forces and veterans, and for other purposes.

·      H Res 868 — Honoring and recognizing the service and achievements of current and former female members of the Armed Forces.

·      H Res 866 — Expressing support for designation of a National Veterans History Project Week to encourage public participation in a nationwide project that collects and preserves the stories of the men and women who served our nation in times of war and conflict

·      H Res 398 — Recognizing the 60th anniversary of the Berlin Airlift’s success.

·      H Res 360 — Urging all Americans and people of all nationalities to visit the national cemeteries,memorials, and markers on Memorial Day.

·      H Res 291 — Recognizing the crucial role of assistance dogs in helping wounded veterans live more independent lives, expressing gratitude to The Tower of Hope, and supporting the goals and ideals of creating a Tower of Hope Day.

·      H Con Res 238 — Recognizing the difficult challenges Black veterans faced when returning home after serving in the Armed Forces, their heroic military sacrifices, and their patriotism in fighting for equal rights and for the dignity of a people and a Nation

·      H J Res 80 — Recognizing and honoring the Blinded Veterans Association on its 65th anniversary of representing blinded veterans and their families.

·      HR 4810 — End Veteran Homelessness Act of 2010

·      HR 4667 — Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2010

·      HR 4505 — To enable State homes to furnish nursing home care to parents any of whose children died while serving in the Armed Forces.

·      HR 3685 — To require the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to include on the main page of the Internet website of the Department of Veterans Affairs a hyperlink to the VetSuccessInternet website and to publicize such Internet website

·      HR 2990 — Disabled Military Retiree Relief Act, which would have adjusted retired military pay and grade for reserve members who are recalled to active status and who completed at least two years of service in active status, as well as other provisions.

·      HR 1293 — Disabled Veterans Home Improvement and Structural Alteration Grant Increase Act of 2009

·      HR 1211 — Women Veterans Health Care Improvement Act

·      HR 1172 — To direct the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to include on the Internet website of the Department of Veterans Affairs a list of organizations that provide scholarships to veterans and their survivors

·      HR 1168 — Veterans Retraining Act of 2009, the bill would have provided financial assistance to unemployed veterans who were enrolled in a training program that teaches a skill that’s in demand.

·      HR 1089 — Veterans Employment Rights Realignment Act, the bill would have helped eliminate a backlog of complaints filed with the Department of Labor by veterans who lost their job because of their military service.

·      HR 1037 — Veterans’ Benefits Enhancement Act of 2009, the bill would have directed the Department of Veterans Affairs to conduct a five-year pilot program to expand work-study opportunities for veterans.

·      HR 1016 — Veterans Health Care Budget Reform and Transparency Act of 2009, which authorized advanced appropriations for VA medical accounts – this will ensure that in the event of a shut down or other partisan stalling, veterans’ health care will continue.

112th Congress

·      HR 4201 — Servicemember Family Protection Act, the bill would have amended current law to address custody issues.

·      HR 2646 — Veterans Health Care Facilities Capital Improvement Act of 2011

·      HR 1657 — To revise the enforcement penalties for misrepresentation of a business concern as a small business concern owned and controlled by veterans or as a small business concern owned and controlled by service-disabled veterans

·      HR 1627 — Honoring America’s Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012

·      HR 1484 — Veterans Appeals Improvement Act of 2011, the bill would have established a VeteransJudicial Review Commission charged with reviewing and making recommendations to Congress to improve the appellate review process for veterans’ benefits.

·      HR 1383 — Restoring GI Bill Fairness Act of 2011, this bill corrected a serious problem related to S 3447 that would have resulted in AZ veterans having to pay more money out of pocket for their tuition.

For more information on Jeff Flake and why he’s running for the U.S. Senate, please visit his website at www.JeffFlake.com.

 

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Frank Antenori: A Response to Patrick Gatti

By Senator Frank Antenori

This morning, while perusing the local left wing rag (Tucson Weekly), I came across an article titled “Congressional Dreaming” written by propaganda specialist Mari Herreras.  It was about the Congressional District 1 race; in particular, it was discussing the “underdogs” in the race.  The article was essentially your standard ho-hum political diatribe until I got near the end and read this gem: “He portrays himself as a warrior, but he was in the National Guard, which I consider to be of lesser quality than full Army.”

Now one might think this might have come from a military loathing lefty; if you thought that, you’d be wrong.  Imagine my surprise when I saw the quote attributed to Republican Congressional candidate Patrick Gatti of Show Low.

This comment would have really set me off if it had come from the left, but the fact that it came from a Republican has ticked me off even more.

In my 20+ years in the military I served in combat with many National Guard and Reserve soldiers.  One of them was SFC Daniel Romero; a fellow Special Forces soldier assigned to the 19th Special Forces Group (Colorado Army National Guard).  Dan and his fellow 19th Group soldiers fought alongside my unit, the 3rd Special Forces Group, in Afghanistan during Operation Anaconda.  Dan was killed in action on April 15th 2002.  I can tell you no one even noticed, let alone mentioned the fact that he was in the National Guard.  To us he was a brother, a fellow Green Beret, who like many before him, laid down his life for his country.  To imply that Dan was a “lesser quality” soldier because he was in the Guard is nothing short of a complete insult. He was one of this country’s most skilled and proficient warriors; above all, he was a patriot.

Since September 11, 2001, the Arizona National Guard has lost seven soldiers in combat.  To be clear, Arizona has lost seven of her finest sons and daughters fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan for our great country and our fine state. All were warriors and patriots, all were cut from the highest quality of American cloth.  To imply they were somehow “lesser quality” is disgraceful.

Every soldier, whether they be active duty, National Guard or Reserves, must meet the Army’s high qualification standards prior to being deployed; everything from physical fitness, combat skills, marksmanship, and Military Occupational Specialty (job) performance levels are evaluated.  These standards are so high that the Pentagon issued a warning in a 2009 report showing data that that 75% of the nation’s 17- to 24-year-olds are ineligible for Army service for a variety of reasons. Add in the washout rates during training, and that percentage grows even higher.  If anything, one can easily say that one must be of the highest quality to serve in the Guard and Reserve.

As far as I’m concerned the only one of “lesser quality” is Mr. Gatti who has demonstrated that he is ignorant of the skills and performance required to be in the Guard and Reserve, not to mention the contribution our Army National Guard and Reserves (a.k.a. Minutemen) have made to this country since the Army’s inception on June 14, 1775.  It is also pretty clear he does not deserve to represent anyone in Congress.

Senator Frank Antenori
Legislative District 30 (new Legislative District 10)

Governor Jan Brewer: Mourning the Loss and Honoring the Service of U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Richard L. Berry

Mourning the Loss and Honoring the Service of U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Richard L. Berry 

“This is a day of sorrow as Arizonans bid goodbye to one of our Nation’s heroes. United States Army Staff Sgt. Richard L. Berry, of Scottsdale, Arizona, died July 22, 2012, after sustaining serious injuries when an improvised explosive device detonated near his dismounted patrol. At the time of the incident, Staff Sgt. Berry, 27, was serving in the Kandahar Providence of

Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

“Staff Sgt. Berry had been assigned to the A Company, 508th Special Troops Battalion, 82nd Airborne Division, based at Fort Bragg, in North Carolina. On this somber day, I encourage all Arizonans to take a moment to reflect upon the daily sacrifice of men and women in uniform such as Staff Sgt. Berry. Their bravery and selfless service protects and preserves the American freedoms we hold dear. Please join me in keeping Staff Sgt. Berry, his family and his fellow servicemen and women in your hearts and prayers during this difficult time.

“On Friday, July 20, President Obama ordered that the American flag be flown at half-staff until sunset July 25, 2012, in remembrance of the victims of the mass shooting in Aurora, Colorado. Today, per my order, lowered State flags in Arizona also will stand as special recognition and tribute to Staff Sgt. Richard L. Berry for his service and sacrifice to a grateful Nation. State flags will be lowered once more on the day of his interment, for which services are pending.”

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Congressman Flake Applauds Passage of Secure Border Act

Operational Control in Each Border Sector is Key to Achieving Border Security

Washington, D.C. – Republican Congressman Jeff Flake, who represents Arizona’s Sixth District, today praised the passage of H.R. 1299, the Secure Border Act, introduced by Congresswoman Candice Miller of Michigan.

The bill directs the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to create for congressional approval a strategy for gaining operational control of the northern and southern U.S. borders.

“Given that the Obama Administration has given up reporting the level of operational control on the border, it’s no wonder Congress has to force them to come up with an approved plan to achieve it,” said Flake.

In 2011, Congressman Flake introduced in the House H.R. 1507, the Border Security Enforcement Act of 2011, which is focused on achieving operational control of the southern U.S. border by increasing border resources. Senators John McCain and Jon Kyl introduced the legislation in the Senate. Among the 10 key provisions of the bill is the deployment of up to 6,000 National Guard troops and 5,000 additional Border Patrol agents to the United States-Mexico border by 2016. It would create additional Border Patrol stations along the southwest border and six additional permanent Border Patrol Forward Operating Bases and would upgrade existing bases.

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Travis Grantham featured in Afghanistan Aeromedical Evacuation Documentary

Watch this video that highlights the sacrifice of those who serve while caring for the heroes who have given all. I was honored to be a part of this documentary while deployed to Afghanistan. Keep in mind that this video focuses on those who survive their injuries. Many more have paid the ultimate sacrifice defending our freedoms. God Bless America!

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Mitt Romney: Thank You

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David Schweikert on Memorial Day

Friends,

As we take time to spend with friends and family this Memorial Day, please join me in pausing briefly to remember all of the servicemen and women who have given the ultimate sacrifice for our country. We should also take a moment to thank all of the Americans who have and are currently serving in our nation’s military.

It is because of their collective commitment to our country that we enjoy freedom others can only dream of.

With appreciation to those who make sacrifices for all of us,

CD-1 Doug Wade: Our Military Members and Families Deserve Better

While President Obama is politicizing the anniversary of the killing of al-Qaida terror leader bin Laden, Arizona Congressional District 1 candidate Doug Wade takes issue with the Obama’s defense budget cuts to military end strength. The following statement is made by Doug Wade as an entire quote:

According to the National Institute of Mental Health in its publication, “NIH Medline Plus,” America’s war veterans are at a high risk of suicide. The risk is so high, that the suicide rate among our serving military members now surpasses that of the general population.

Reserve and National Guard members are at a high risk. Between 2008 and 2009, there was a 36% increase in suicides among Army Reserve soldiers not on active duty.

Thinning our military forces during a time of war contributes to the combat stress that military members, including those in the National Guard and Reserve, bring home with them. This is increased in great part because we demand more multiple back to back combat deployments.

As Congress begins its consideration of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of Fiscal Year 2013 (FY13), it is imperative that Members and Senators take into account ‘strategy’ over budget driven decisions by the Department of Defense (DOD) in determining appropriate end strength requirements. As a country at war, now is not the time to start thinning our national security force.

Our service members are already being asked to sacrifice precious time with their families, serving multiple (in some cases four or five) tours of duty in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). The Obama Administration is cutting the military force in the FY13 Budget Request. We are not only reducing our strength, but increasing the time we ask our service members to spend away from their loved ones.

In these tough economic times, it is important we have close inspection of how our money is spent. In doing so, we will undoubtedly find areas in which we can run more efficient and effectively. Trying to cut corners to our national defense, we create more problems for both our service members and our way of life.

Information that is distributed by leaders in the United Arizona Veterans council and other citations tell us that 1 in every 5 military members returning from Iraq and Afghanistan have PTSD and that overall more than 300,000 service members, or 20 percent of the military members that have deployed in the past six years have PTSD.

At the highest risk are the members of the National Guard and Reserve. All branches of the military, including the Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard, have deployed members to the ground wars in both Iraq and Afghanistan to make up for shortages or provide support for soldiers and Marines – it is truly an unconventional use of military forces due to a continual down-sizing of the military.

Unlike active duty members, Reserve and National Guard members are together for only 40 some days a year outside of a deployment cycle. They rely on private medical care and don’t have as many trained, watchful eyes on them when they go home. We also know that the effects of PTSD don’t immediately surface – it starts sometime after 90 days of being back home.

Not only must we provide excellent mental health and other services to both our active duty and reserve forces, we need to keep our military personnel numbers up as long as we are at war, not decrease them. The decreases are causing more back to back deployments and stresses that those who serve will carry with them for a lifetime.

As a Veteran, as someone who is running for Congress, I am standing up for these military members and their families to make sure we take the steps that keeps them from an early grave.

About Doug Wade
Doug Wade is a Republican Candidate for U.S. Representative in Arizona Congressional District 1. He has lived in the District more than 25 years. He is the father of two grown daughters. He and his wife, Grazina, operate a construction firm based in Sedona, Arizona. He has been active in the Yavapai County Republican Party. To learn more about Doug Wade, visit www.wadeforcongress2012.com.

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The Arizona Project PAC with co-sponsors Jim & Adriana Gruber and Dr. Glenna McCollum honor: Maricopa County Treasurer ‘Hos’ Hoskins …and candidates for Maricopa County Supervisor:

John McCain calls for air strikes on Syrian government forces

U.S. Senator John McCain appeared on CNN’s John King on Monday calling for air strikes on Syria’s government forces. Here is video of that appearance:

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