At tonight’s U.S. Senate debate in Concord, Senator Shaheen has an opportunity to clear the air regarding conflicting accounts of the role she played – or didn’t play – in supporting key provisions of the VA reform law passed earlier this year.
In an ad released today, veterans advocacy group Concerned Veterans for America(CVA) accuses Sen. Shaheen and her third party allies of trying to take undue credit for the passage of VA reform legislation. The ad accuses Shaheen of refusing to meet in DC with veterans seeking bipartisan support for the bill before the VA scandal broke, and then – after VA malfeasance made national headlines – rushing to cosponsor the bill only after CVA ran ads statewide exposing her failure to support it. But worst of all, after having to be shamed in to supporting the bill, Senator Shaheen is now trying to take political credit for playing a key role in the bill’s passage.
That’s not a record anyone should be able to brag on and not one CVA will let stand without a challenge!
To finally set the record straight, CVA is calling on Sen. Shaheen to own up to the truth at tonight’s debate by answering the following three questions:
If veteran choice provisions are something you are so passionate about, why in April – before the VA scandal broke – did you refuse to meet with a CVA delegation (including New Hampshire vets) attempting to enlist your support in passing such reforms?
What was different about the veteran choice bill you refused to support before the VA scandal broke and the VA Management Accountability Act, which you rushed to cosponsor afterwards? Or was it just the ads CVA ran calling you out for your lack of support?
If the plight of New Hampshire veterans having to cross state lines for VA care was of such a concern to you, why were no efforts made to address this and other VA problems with mismanagement and patient backlogs prior to the national scandal?
“I’m particularly disappointed in Senator Shaheen trying to take credit for these VA reforms because I was in Washington for CVA’s ‘Vets on the Hill’ when she refused our meeting request,” said New Hampshire veteran and former Mayor of Somersworth, Matt Spencer. “I thought for sure Senator Shaheen would give us the early bipartisan support we needed because she’s stood with New Hampshire veterans in the past, but in this case, she let me – and all New Hampshire vets – down.”
“Sen. Jeanne Shaheen’s attempts to take credit for the passage of VA reform is a shameless distortion of the truth that CVA will not allow to go unchallenged,” said Pete Hegseth, CEO of CVA. “The truth is that Senator Shaheen had to be essentially dragged into co-sponsoring VA accountability legislation after the scandal broke and a CVA ad exposed her lack of support for it. The Shaheen campaign’s claims that the Senator led the push for this bill is another example of why people are disgusted with Washington. CVA will continue to serve as a watchdog to both the VA and officials like Shaheen who sat on the sidelines when it counted.”
Today, CVA launched a new digital ad campaign in New Hampshire addressing Sen. Shaheen’s false claims. Our CEO, Pete Hegseth, also recorded a brief video explaining in detail why CVA could not let Shaheen get away with her distortions.