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Public Statements

Issue Position: Veterans

Issue Position

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Issue Position: Veterans

Fighting For Our Veterans, Our Troops, and Their Families

"I joined the U.S. Army in 1993 and I know how important it is that we all respect and honor the sacrifices of all veterans. You can rest assured that as your Congressman, I will do everything in my power to ensure that our troops, our veterans and their families receive all of the support and benefits that they have so bravely earned."

Fighting for a National Veterans Cemetery in Bucks County

"Since being sworn in, I have been working hard with Democrats and Republicans to ensure that the Southeastern Pennsylvania National Veterans Cemetery will be built right here in Bucks County. Now that the sale of the cemetery site has been finalized, I am proud to say that we are making this long overdue honor a reality. Washington Crossing VA National Cemetery will be one of Bucks County's greatest treasures for decades to come and a fitting final resting place for generations of American heroes."
- Congressman Patrick J. Murphy

Reaching Across Party Lines to Deliver for the Veterans of Southeastern Pennsylvania

Secured a new VA Vets Center for Bucks County

* Worked with Bucks County Director of Veterans Affairs Dan Fraley to convince the VA to open a new Vets Center in Bucks County. This center, which will provide readjustment counseling and services to new and existing combat veterans, should be fully operational by the end of December 2009.

Challenged VA to ensure veterans are aware of state and local benefits

* Again collaborating with Mr. Fraley, convinced the VA to inform veterans that they may be eligible for state and local veterans benefits.
* This will ensure that PA veterans know of important benefits, like property tax relief for 100% disabled veterans.

Passed A New GI Bill

Original Cosponsor of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act

* Allows servicemembers who have served at least three months active duty since 9/11 to receive as much as four full years of tuition and living expenses. The size of the benefit is proportional to time served.
* Eliminates the current Montgomery GI Bill's costly $1200 buy-in; extends to fifteen years the amount of time veterans have to use their GI Bill benefit.

Increased Funding for Veterans and Our Troops

Introduced and passed H.Con.Res. 162, calling for a 3.5% pay raise for all servicemembers

* This resolution, which passed the House on November 6, 2007, calls for the President to sign the National Defense Authorization Act granting all servicemembers a 3.5% pay increase.

Voted for an increase in Military Construction and Veterans Affairs spending

* Increases the VA budget by $6.7 billion - the largest single increase in the 77 year history of the Veterans Administration.
* Significantly reduces the claims backlog of 400,000 veterans waiting for disability and other benefits by adding more than 1,800 new claims processors.

Voted for H.R. 1585, the National Defense Authorization Act

* Increases pay for all service members by 3.5%, prohibits TRICARE fee increases and authorizes $17.6 billion for Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) Vehicles that better protect our troops from roadside bombs.

Cleaning up the Mess at Walter Reed

Voted for H.R. 1538, the Wounded Warrior Assistance Act

* Improves access to quality medical care for wounded servicemembers, cuts through bureaucratic red tape and improves the transition of wounded soldiers from the Armed Forces to the Veterans Affairs system.
* Creates a system of patient advocates who will fight for proper treatment and establishes a toll-free hotline for reporting deficiencies in veterans facilities.
* Establishes a toll-free hot line for reporting deficiencies in veterans facilities.
* Passed Congress as part of the National Defense Authorization Act.

Protecting the Mental Health of Our Veterans

Co-sponsored H.R. 1354, the Lane Evans Veterans Health and Benefits Improvement Act

* Cares for veterans' mental health by lengthening the window during which a veteran may be diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and requiring a face-to-face mental heath evaluation for new veterans.

Co-sponsored H.R. 1944, the Veterans Traumatic Brain Injury Act

* Requires the VA to screen veterans for symptoms of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), develop and operate a comprehensive program of long-term care for post-acute TBI rehabilitation, establish TBI transition offices at all polytrauma network sites and create and maintain a TBI veterans health registry.

Co-Sponsored H.R. 327, the Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act

* Develops a comprehensive program to regularly screen and monitor all veterans for risk factors of suicide. Ensures that at-risk veterans receive appropriate help including 24-hour mental health care.

Supported Legislation

Military Families

* The 21st Century Servicemembers Protection Act*
* Resolution to increase basic pay for members of the Armed Forces*
* Support for Injured Servicemembers Act
* Helmet Pad Reimbursement Act
* The Children of Fallen Soldiers Pell Grant Act
* The Fallen Service Member Respectful Return Act
* Reauthorization of the Grave Marker Benefit
* Select Committee on POW and MIA Affairs Act
* The Heroes Earnings Assistance and Relief Tax Act
* National Guard and Reservists Debt Relief Act

Disabled Veterans

* Disabled Veterans Commissary and Exchange Store Benefits Act
* Disabled Veterans Tax Termination Act
* The Retired Pay Restoration Act
* The Combat Related Special Compensation Act
* The Blind Veterans Fairness Act
* The Vision Impairment Specialist Training Act
* Veterans Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act
* Benefit Rating Acceleration for Veteran Entitlements
* Full Faith in Veterans Act
* American Veterans Disabled for Life Commemorative Coin

Educational and Professional Opportunities for Veterans

* 21st Century GI Bill of Rights *
* Hire a Hero Act*
* Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act
* Veterans Education Tuition Support Act
* Veterans Equity in Education Act
* Expansion of the Education Loan Repayment Program for Members of the Selected Reserve
* National Guard and Reserve Higher Education Fairness Act
* Resume Education After Defense Act
* American Veterans Congressional Internship Act
* Early Access to Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Benefits Act
* Ready Employers Willing to Assist Reservists' Deployment Act (REWARD Act)
* Fair Benefits For Guard and Reserve Act

Honoring Service

* Passed legislation naming the Morrisville, PA post office after Guardsman Nate DeTample*
* Military Valor Roll of Honor Act*
* Resolution Recognizing the 75th Anniversary of the Military Order of the Purple Heart
* Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day Resolution
* Authorization for Establishing in Our Nation's Capital a Memorial to Honor Disabled Veterans
* Let Our Veterans Rest in Peace Act

Wounded Soldiers, Veterans' Health Care and Veterans' Support

* Legislation to improve the VA's Homeless Veterans Program*
* Veterans Guaranteed Bonus Act*
* Veterans Homelessness Prevention Act
* Homes for Heroes Act
* The Honor Our Commitment to Veterans Act
* The Military Retirees Health Care Protection Act
* The Veterans Health Care Improvement Act
* Veterans Emergency Care Fairness Act
* The Returning Servicemember VA Healthcare Insurance Act
* Substance Use Disorders Prevention and Treatment Act
* The Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act
* Veterans Suicide Study Act
* Lane Evans Veterans Health and Benefits Improvement Act
* The Veterans Outreach Improvement Act
* Veterans Benefits Awareness Act
* Wounded Warrior Information Sharing Act
* The Wounded Warriors Assistance Act
* Veterans Traumatic Brain Injury Act
* The Traumatic Brain Injury Health Enhancement and Long-Term Support Act
* The Chiropractic Care Available to All Veterans Act
* Veterans' Epilepsy Treatment Act
* Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Facility Authorization and Lease Act
* The Dr. James Allen Veteran Vision Equity Act
* Military Eye Trauma Act
* Make Our Veterans Smile Act
* Veterans Voting Support Act

*Legislation introduced by Rep. Murphy

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