Washington DC—In a letter to the President today, U.S. Representative Duncan Hunter was joined by a bipartisan group of 25 House lawmakers in urging the President to alleviate the claims backlog at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and take steps to improve the benefit delivery system.  The letter is signed by Members of Congress who are military veterans or actively serving in the National Guard and Reserves. 

“Veterans are a special class of people," said Representative Duncan Hunter.  "At the very least, they deserve a benefit delivery system that is reflective of their service and sacrifice, but that's not what they're getting.  The backlog of claims is staggering and the steady stream of complaints is indicative of a system that lacks efficiency.  If VA leadership is unwilling to initiate the improvements and changes needed to restore confidence and trust, then the President has a responsibility to take action."  

Representative Tom Rooney added, “I’m tired of having to make excuses for the VA to veterans in my district who aren’t getting decent, timely services and treatment. The VA has been promising for years to reduce the backlog, but it just keeps getting longer. Our veterans deserve more than empty promises – they deserve results.  We need to see meaningful changes at the VA, and that starts with a commitment from President Obama to require real leadership and implement significant reforms.”

"The men and women who bravely put their lives on the line to defend our country deserve not only our gratitude, but also the support they were promised," said Representative Adam Kinzinger. "The current situation at the Department of Veterans Affairs is unacceptable and I ask the President to join us in our efforts to reform our failing system."

Representative Tim Murphy concluded, “Veterans who spent years defending our nation overseas shouldn’t spend years at home waiting for the VA to serve them.  We are going to put an end to the long waiting periods so that veterans get first class service and the benefits they earned.  Congress has given more money, more resources, and more employees to the VA to address this problem, but it still persists.  We're going to fix this ongoing problem and I welcome the President to join in our effort to eliminate the backlog and ensure our veterans get the care they deserve.