With the elections over, the new House and Senate will have their first session in early 2013. They will be faced with many issues — old and new. It is time for the new Congress to put aside politics and become legislators.
There are still two major bills in committee of interest to Vietnam veterans, HR 3612 and SB 1629. These bills would restore Veterans Affairs benefits for Agent Orange exposure during the Vietnam War.
The current House and Senate still have time to act upon these bills before January. These bills must come out of committee and go to the floor of both houses.
I ask the American people to urge our legislators to act on these bills. The Vietnam veterans who are sick from Agent Orange dioxin exposure need these bills to be passed into law before the new Congress convenes.
A new legislative session will require us advocates for Vietnam veterans to start again. This means longer delays for veterans’ VA approval and thousands won’t be approved because they did not have boots on ground, even though they were awarded the Vietnam Service Medal.
Many sailors, airmen and Fleet Marines who served during that war are sick from exposure to the deadly herbicide. The passage of these bills means these members of the armed forces will receive equality for VA benefits.
John J. Bury
Media, Delaware CountyThe writer is retired from the U.S. Navy and is a Vietnam veteran