Recently 24 recipients of the Medal of Honor released a letter criticizing Kerry for voting against a $1.3 billion increase in veterans' health care benefits and missing some Senate votes related to veterans.
Kerry says he supports veterans’ health care benefits and President Bush doesn’t. However, a recent study shows veterans’ benefits went up 30 percent in eight years of Clinton, and 40 percent in three years of Bush.
On June 21 Kerry rushed back to Washington, D.C. to register support for a guarantee of federal funding for veterans' health care. The Republicans postponed the vote. Kerry then charged that GOP leaders shelved the vote to disrupt his campaign and deny him an issue he has championed. Republicans replied that Kerry, often absent from the Senate during his campaign, was grandstanding. Later that day, the Senate official photo was taken in the chamber; had Kerry missed it, he would have been the only absentee.
Kerry, who has missed 89 percent of the Senate's votes this year as of Monday, and 64 percent last year (including several votes on veterans' health care issues)., said Bush should immediately call a special session of Congress to implement the recommendations of the Sept. 11 commission. Kerry said he would interrupt his campaigning to be there for debate and voting "when necessary."
Why now? Do they have to retake the Senate picture?