FACT CHECK: Trump Continues to Lie to Veterans
July 24, 2018
Trump and his administration continue to lie to veterans about many of the issues that are most important to them.
At what was supposed to be an official, non-political event with the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Trump and the White House repeatedly misled veterans and current servicemembers. Our troops, both present and past, are the protectors of our nation and not political pawns. They deserve so much better.
Here’s a fact check of some of Trump and the White House’s more egregious lies during his speech today:
LIE: “President Trump signed the VA MISSION Act into law, enacting sweeping reforms to improve and modernize veterans care.”
FACT: The White House actively encouraged lawmakers to oppose funding the VA Mission Act.
Washington Post: “But the White House has engaged in a quiet effort to thwart the senators’ plan, encouraging lawmakers to vote it down and instead asking Congress to pay for the veterans programs by cutting spending elsewhere.”
Washington Post: “White House officials are circulating a memo on Capitol Hill this week that slams the senators’ proposal as ‘anathema to responsible spending’ and that predicts it would lead to ballooning costs and ‘virtually unlimited increases’ in veterans’ spending on private health care.”
FACT: Republican lawmakers have yet to fund the VA Mission Act.
Military.com: “More than 30 Veterans Service Organizations have backed Senate proposals to fund the recently passed VA Mission Act, which expands private health care options. The proposals, which are opposed by the White House, would give up to $55 billion in funding over five years.”
LIE: “President Trump continues to deliver on his pledge to strengthen accountability and transparency at the VA.”
FACT: Trump exaggerated the effects of the VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act, and whistleblower retaliation has actually increased under Trump.
AP Fact Check: “But the law’s impact on improving accountability at the department remains unclear: More VA employees were fired in former President Barack Obama’s last budget year, for instance, than in Trump’s first.”
Washington Post: “Well, nine months into the Trump administration, that message is not clear, and games continue to be played. Not only does the cancer of VA whistleblower retaliation remain active, but it’s also growing, according to employees who have suffered its sting.”
LIE: TRUMP: ”I'm also thrilled to say that we have secured for our military servicemembers … the largest pay raise in almost a decade... It's been a long time since you've gotten a raise.”
FACT: U.S. servicemembers have gotten larger pay raises several times over the last decade.
AP Fact Check: “THE FACTS: That’s not right. U.S. military members have gotten a pay raise every year for the past 10 years and several have been larger than this year’s 2.6 percent increase. Pay increases in 2008, 2009 and 2010, for example, were all 3.4 percent or more.”
LIE: “We’re also processing veteran disability claims more quickly than ever before by far.”
FACT: The VA inspector general reported that 20,000 disabled veterans were subjected to unnecessary follow-up examinations to verify their disability last year.
Military.com: “A Department of Veterans Affairs watchdog has discovered the agency spent about $10 million in unwarranted medical exams for military veterans, and warned another $101 million could be lost from similar procedures in the next five years. Last year, the Veterans Benefits Administration required nearly 20,000 disabled veterans to submit to unwarranted, follow-up medical exams—also known as ‘re-examinations’—to verify whether a disability was still present or had worsened, the VA inspector general estimated.”