By Alex Amico, Alexandria
To the editor:
More than any other state, Virginia has a deep relationship with the military. Not only is the commonwealth home to more veterans per capita than any other state, but military spending also is a crucial part of our economy.
We have a moral obligation to stand up for our soldiers and veterans, but it also is a smart economic decision for our state, and U.S. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) has consistently done just that.
Earlier this year, Warner assisted in bringing $3.5 million of AmeriCorps funding to Virginia. One recipient was the Catholic Charities of USA AmeriCorps Peer Navigators in Alexandria. This funding allows the organization to increase its aid to military members and veterans in our area — specifically in healthcare and employment.
Helping all of Virginia’s military members is a priority for Warner. Just a few days ago, the senator joined a bipartisan group of Virginia legislators in writing to the Secretary of the Air Force to advocate for the Langley-Eustis Joint Base as a future home for the Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center. The jobs it would bring would help compensate for the recent consolidation of the Air Force, which hit Virginia particularly hard.
Warner consistently champions military families. Last year he and U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) introduced the Military Retirement Restoration Act, which would repeal $6 billion in proposed cuts to veterans’ pensions. In addition, just a few weeks ago, senators Warner and Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) convinced defense appropriators to drop a proposal that would cut funding for military commissaries.
These days, it’s easy to be jaded and cynical about politics. But amidst all the partisanship and conflict, it’s refreshing that we have someone like Warner fighting for those who fight for us.