U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney (FL-16) praised yesterday's House passage of the Stolen Valor Act of 2011, H.R. 1775. The bill, which Rooney cosponsored, makes it illegal to benefit from lying about receiving military awards.
"I meet with veterans in my district as often as I can, and this is always one of the first issues they want to discuss," Rooney said. "The veterans I speak with are furious, and so am I, that people are out there lying about military service and decorations in order to make a profit. We owe it to our veterans, who have earned military awards for real acts of heroism, to protect and honor their service."
H.R. 1775 makes a key change to the Stolen Valor Act of 2005, which was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court on the grounds that it infringed upon free speech rights, to ensure that it can withstand constitutional scrutiny. The bill, introduced by Rep. Joe Heck (R-NV), focuses on those who seek to benefit from fraudulently claiming to have received military awards, rather than on false claims themselves.