WASHINGTON, July 1 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) leaves Friday on a congressional delegation trip to Vietnam led by Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), the Senate health committee chairman.
Sanders, a member of the health committee, said one focus of the trip will be on the lingering health consequences from Agent Orange, the code name for one of the herbicides and defoliants widely used by the U.S. military in southeast Asia. Sanders also is a member of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee, and supported the recent extension of benefits to veterans whose exposure to Agent Orange has led to heart disease, leukemia and Parkinson’s disease.
Trade policies and their impact on American workers is another issue that Sanders will explore on the trip during Congress’s one-week July recess.
Agent Orange remains a concern for many Vermonters who served during the Vietnam war. Sanders on June 19 participated in a town meeting in Montpelier hosted by Vermont veterans of the Vietnam War. They are concerned about birth defects and other lingering health consequences for families of servicemen exposed to Agent Orange.MORE: http://sanders.senate.gov/newsroom/news/?id=00153852-dc63-41e0-9259-6d97710b8581 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ChMCpkuS2yI
Sanders will travel to Vietnam with Senators Al Franken (D-MN), Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR).