For someone who represents a state with a large military and veterans’ presence, this is rich beyond words… First a little background: late last week, there was a hearing in the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee concerning the ongoing VA scandal over whether several veterans’ hospitals were falsifying records in order to meet certain reporting requirements and during the meeting, the ranking Republican on the committee walked out during testimony by several VSOs (Veterans’ Service Organizations) on the scandal.
That senator…was NC’s Richard Burr. Now, that’s bad enough to qualify him as an idiot (and I’m being very polite when I refer to Sen. Burr as an ‘idiot’) but it was an open letter his office released the following day or so after the hearing that earned him the title of idiot above. In that letter he basically tried to call out several of the VSOs’ that were at the committee hearing for supposedly not going along with the American Legion, who’ve already called for Veterans’ Secretary Eric Shinseki to resign over the scandal.
In response, several of the groups – most notably the Paralyzed Veterans of America and the Veterans of Foreign Wars – called Senator Burr out for his remarks in the open letter, essentially saying that the senator’s remarks exemplified the worst in American politics…but it was the Disabled American Veterans who put it best, saying in part…
“Senator Burr may be enamored with the idea that all of VA’s problems and challenges can be overcome by replacing one Secretary, but the plain facts and simple logic indicate otherwise. If Senator Burr believes that calling for the resignation of Secretary Shinseki is the only measure of whether a leader cares about veterans, perhaps he should check with Speaker Boehner, Chairman Miller and numerous Republican Senate colleagues who have not yet done so,” the group said in a statement.(Politico)
Now, the prudent course for Sen. Burr – one would think – would be to feign some sort of apology and move along…apparently, Richard Burr has doubled down on his idiocy…
“The VSOs’ response is a rousing defense of the status quo at VA,” Burr said in a statement provided to CQ Roll Call. “It’s clear that my open letter to America’s veterans has outraged some VSOs more than the scandals at VA — I believe their testimony stands on its own.”(CQ Roll Call)
You know, if I’m a Democratic advisor come 2016, I’d be running with this the whole time…and people still think Republicans can be trusted with anything anymore?