Sunday, October 29, 2006

News-Leader endorses Talent

In today's edition, the Springfield News-Leader endorsed incumbent Sen. Jim Talent:

"Our choice is Talent.We think he's a better fit for the job. We believe he's done nothing in the past four years to disqualify him from our continued support. And we believe his views are most in line with southwest Missouri voters."


Anonymous said...

The News-Leader should have stopped at "We believe he's done nothing in the last four years...."

Anonymous said...

Judging Talent

I am not surprised at all by the endorsement of John Ashcrofts biggest cheerleader.

I have always believed that a person should be rightly judged by what they do instead of what they say. In my research of Congressional voting records where military and veterans affairs are concerned, I found that elected Republicans only talk the talk, they don’t walk the walk. And you will be shocked to see who the biggest hypocrite turns out to be.

Another thing that I try to do is gather pertinent facts from the most qualified and relevant sources. For example, as regards the war in Iraq, it would seem more important to see what Iraq and Afghanistan veterans thought of their elected representatives, than it would be to determine the opinions of older veterans.

Likewise, if I want an assessment of the state of veteran’s affairs, the experiences of disabled veterans should be more relevant, and therefore more important, than those in better circumstances.

With these parameters in mind, I examined the voting record of Missouri Senator Jim Talent through the lenses of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America ( and the Disabled American Veterans.

A stealth member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Talent missed 65 of 95 committee sessions, earning him a D+ from the Iraq/Afghanistan veterans. Here are some of the reasons why:

• Talent voted against free Tricare for Life for USAR and National Guard.
• He voted twice against more funding for Traumatic Brain Injury research, although it affects 100,000 troops.
• He voted no to a paltry $2 million for Readjustment Counseling Services, but yes to $65 billion for more aircraft.
• Voted no to $21.9 billion for VA medical care and hospital improvements. 2/2/06
• As recently as this March, Talent voted against a $1.5 billion increase for outpatient care, and was against providing an assured stream of funding for veterans programs.
• Talent voted with the President to allow the CIA to continue to torture captured enemy combatants, thereby insuring adverse treatment for captured American soldiers in the future. 9/12/06

The voting record shows that the Democrats in the Senate consistently vote for the interests of veterans by a large margin over Republicans. You can see the DAV scorecard at ( Overall, Democrats voted for veterans 88% of the time, while the GOP members only supported veterans half the time, Talent 60% of the time.

Only 5 members of the U.S. Senate voted 100 percent for veterans: Sen. Tim Johnson, D-SD; Sen. Bill Nelson, D-FL; Sen. Mark Pryor, D-AR; Sen. John Rockefeller, D-WV; and Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-MI.

And the Senator with the worst record, the man who voted for veterans interests the least? Sen. John McCain, R-AZ. The former POW supported veterans a measly 20 percent of the time, and was joined in the cellar only by the two GOP senators from Idaho.

While I have only looked into Jim Talent’s record regarding veterans, if this is how little he cares for soldiers, I have seen enough.