I was disappointed recently to read of your decision to undermine the VA MISSION Act law by refusing to even participate in the AIR Commission confirmation process. Your actions are an afront to veterans everywhere and deny them a modern, responsive, and flexible VA health system to meet their needs.
Since the Phoenix VA scandal in 2014, the VA MISSION Act and the AIR process established under it represent the greatest opportunity to refocus the VA’s offerings on the veterans it serves. The AIR process is critical to providing safe, modern, and efficient facilities for veterans to have their health care needs met.
Previously, Senator Tester, you championed the VA MISSION Act and the AIR Commission it established:
“Wherever it makes sense for the veteran to go, that’s where they go. Our bill gets rid of a one-size-fits-all system and creates a more efficient, easier-to-navigate system.”
It seems now politics takes priority over the veterans who have fought, sacrificed, and lost in defense of this country and the freedoms we enjoy. For their sake, the least you can do is muster the political willpower to face, debate, and make the tough decisions on something they were promised for that sacrifice.
Not allowing the VA to adapt, modernize, and improve keeps veterans trapped in a broken, outdated, and outmoded system. They deserve better.
Each of you represent vast constituencies of veterans in your respective states. Beyond that, your actions will affect the millions of veterans around the country who need a better VA system. Don’t pass the buck.
Don’t deny them the care they need and have earned. Let the AIR process play out and create a better VA system for today’s veterans and tomorrow’s.
Cc: Sens. Manchin, Heinrich, Rounds, Capito, Hassan, Thune, Brown, Murray, Daines, Portman, Luján