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Letter: Roskam's proposed fix the wrong one for VA healthcare woes

Published: Tuesday, June 17, 2014 6:55 p.m. CDT

To the editor:

If my Illinois Sixth District Congressman Peter Roskam needs a new job come Nov. 4, he should consider teaching political science. His first course could be "The art of political sophistry: How to fool the public."

Sophistry, for the uninitiated, is the art of using false arguments to deceive folks. Take Roskam's June 5 Suburban Life op-ed, "Work needed to fix VA hospital system."

There is no mention of the highly lauded care given (to) VA patients because that has never been the issue. Most vets and veterans groups speak very highly of the care given. Roskam simply focuses on the real problem of inadequate resources, which has caused some VA officials to fake the waiting time in VA reporting.

His solution, a GOP bill to make firing VA officials easier, does nothing to boost desperately needed funding. But what Roskam has known for all seven-and-a-half years as congressman, is that the VA is overwhelmed with patients, upwards of 400,000 from PTSD alone, from our senseless wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that he has fervently championed.  

"The Sixth District is not a 'cut and run' district" and "It was mistake (the) U.S. didn't go into Iraq with full force" are two egregious examples of his loyalty to the war party that thrives on endless war. Roskam's involvement with creating an overwhelming VA case load is compounded by his House GOP leadership position, which requires him to oppose virtually all spending on the social safety net, including adequate VA funding, so it can be returned to his affluent base in larger tax cuts. 

There is work needed to improve the VA. Unfortunately, opposing senseless war and adequate funding for the VA are not in Roskam's skill set.

Walt Zlotow

Glen Ellyn

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