There is no constituency in this nation that supports threatening to kill millions of jobs unless the VA is gutted. Except, apparently, extreme MAGA House Republicans.

Last week, nearly every single GOP House member went on record backing a far right proposal to single-handedly trigger an economic meltdown unless they are allowed to hollow out the Department of Veterans Affairs in the service of tax cuts for the rich.

House Republicans voted to cut 81,000 jobs from the VA, reducing outpatient visits by 30 million, and increasing the disability claims backlog by an estimated 134,000.

These draconian cuts to America’s veterans have no precedent in America’s history. And prioritizing tax welfare for wealthy special interests over honoring our commitments to those who have put their lives on the line for our country is as backwards as politics gets.

A wide range of top veterans organizations wrote to congressional Republicans imploring them not to put these critical programs on the chopping block. They wrote, “We strongly urge Congress to not pass The Limit, Save, Grow Act of 2023 and request that protections to VA funding be added to ‘fulfill President Lincoln’s promise to care for those who have served in our nation’s military and for their families, caregivers, and survivors.’”

But all 24 veterans groups were ignored.

Instead, now extreme MAGA Republicans are running victory lap after victory lap over persuading even moderate GOP House members to endorse selling out of Americans who served in uniform to billionaires and giant corporations.  

The American people fundamentally reject this scorched earth approach to governing. That they won’t stand for throwing veterans under the bus in the service of rigging the tax code even further for the richest Americans.  

Like President Biden says, budgets are windows into what people value and who they’re fighting for. Unless moderates are willing to stand up to the extreme MAGA groups that have taken over the conference, the House GOP is going to define themselves as so indentured to multinational corporations and billionaires that they’re willing to make the biggest cuts to veterans benefits in American history. Which would be a revolting legacy.


Andrew Bates is the White House Deputy Press Secretary and Senior Communications Adviser.

Ksenija Pavlovic is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the Pavlovic Today, The Chief White House Correspondent. Pavlovic was a Teaching Fellow and Doctoral Fellow in the Political Science department...

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