As VA Backlog Grows, ‘Baffled’ Veteran Allies Begin to Turn On President
As the benefits system for veterans has bogged down on Obama’s watch, in spite of his promises to fix it, advocates who had been allies are running out of patience with the president, reports Jamie Reno.
by Jamie Reno | April 8, 2013 4:45 AM EDT
America’s 23 million veterans are facing an unprecedented crisis as the backlog of disability claims at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has grown to nearly 1 million—more than double what it was when President Obama took office.
People stand in line to speak with representatives from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs about U.S. military veterans benefits in Washington, D.C., on January 18, 2012. (Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty)
The situation has reached a tipping point. Newspaper editorial boards and magazines call it a “national disgrace” and insist VA Secretary Eric Shinseki should resign. Rep. Jeff Miller (R-FL), chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, is calling for the resignation of Allison Hickey, the VA’s head of benefits.