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Democrats playing politics with military survivors after line of duty deaths

Washington, D.C. - It is sad House Democrats are playing political chess and compromising widows who lost their loved ones in the line of duty. Normally, I work to remain positive in a climate of endless negative news. However, Democrats have crossed the line and you need to know the truth.

Congress should strive for Democrats and Republicans in Washington to work together. A significant achievement has been the Military Surviving Spouses Equity Act which I introduced recruiting 365 bipartisan co-sponsors, but now this bill is being undermined.

It is rare that a bill garners this many co-sponsors. Over 80 percent of Congress has co-sponsored this legislation. My colleagues on both sides of the aisle support this legislation to repeal the “Widow’s Tax”. Surviving spouses and their supporters have worked tirelessly on this legislation.

House Democrats had the ability to bring the Military Surviving Spouses Equity Act to a vote this week. Instead, Democratic leadership threw a wrench in the plan by tacking it on to a flawed and hyper-partisan bill, which they know will not receive support on both sides of the aisle.

Very few Americans want to be inundated with Washington jargon, but it is critical to understand the games Democrat leadership is playing with already suffering widows. This is partisan politics at its worst.

This is heart breaking for the 65,000 military widows in America. At the peak of their hopes that the bill would pass this week, Democrats put the future of the bill in jeopardy. Instead of supporting our military and supporting military families, including those who died in sacrifice of this country, Democrats chose to violate their own rules and put this bill in danger. This tactic cheapens the efforts of these military widows by turning their real-world plight into a partisan tactic that ensures the bill’s demise in the Senate. This is a disservice to these widows who frankly deserve better.

I followed all the rules the Democrats set forth to have this overwhelmingly bipartisan piece of legislation set for a vote, and they decided to play partisan politics and remove it.

Our servicemembers gave all and this Congress can’t even follow its own rules. I regret Democrats have diverted this important bill in the manner they have. I hope they think long and hard about the implications of this political gimmick. We are not talking about procedure. We are not talking about rules. We are talking about people, not pawns. There is still time left to do the right thing. Democrats, it’s your move to allow a stand-alone vote to repeal the Widow’s tax.

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