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UPDATE – Repub ‘Dr.No’ Stops Veteran Suicide Prevention Act

Updated at 9:30pm est

Dr. No has done it. Outgoing Senator Tom Coburn has single handedly managed to prevent the passage of the Clay Hunt SAV Act this Congressional session.
IAVA’s Paul Rieckhoff posted this to facebook earlier this evening.



In a rare bi-partisan show of support, both Senators Murkowski and Begich co-signed a bill that looks to provide 22 million dollars in funding for suicide prevention among veterans. The bill is called the Clay Hunt SAV Act, and if you watched Rachael Maddow the other night [see above] you’d know that a lone Senator is holding the bill up. That outgoingOfficial Portrait Senator is Tom Coburn (R-OK) aka ‘Dr. No’ – he’s holding up the bill, because well… because he can. After a farewell speech in which he rambled on about the founding fathers, and the power of one senator, he decided to make this his last stand – and hopefully what people will remember him for. He would prevent a bill that gives funding for veteran suicide prevention under the guise of fiscal conservatism.

Coburn claims that the VA could do what the Clay Hunt act already does, if it wanted to. The Washington Times put it this way  – “Mr. Coburn, who is a medical doctor, says this portion of the bill is duplicative since the VA already has the authority to offer incentives like this to understaffed specialties.” The bill would, among other things, provide tuition support for doctors that would agree to work for the Veterans Administration for a time period. The idea behind this is to fill the many gaps that the VA has in helping veterans mental health.

Needless to say, veterans groups are not happy with Sen. Coburn. The Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans Association Association [IAVA]:

“While we appreciate the many Senators who have stood up to support our bill and our nation’s veterans, we join them in expressing our dismay that Senator Coburn would block this bill. Unfortunately, one lone Senator is putting his agenda ahead of his colleagues and the veteran community,” said IAVA CEO and Founder Paul Rieckhoff. “Every minute until the Senate eventually adjourns, our members will be fighting to bring this bill to the floor for a fair vote. Twenty-two veterans die by suicide each day due to bureaucratic red tape when accessing mental health care and scheduling appointments. They had our backs overseas, and our members need to ensure Congress has their backs when they come home.”

The IAVA has set up a easy way that you can direct your thoughts to Sen Coburn and pledge your support of the act at the link.

After you do that, go and check out the amazing turnout of voices on Coburn’s facebook page. Here are a couple screenshots for you to get a flavor of the discussion. [I selected some of the more clean ones.]

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11 Responses to “UPDATE – Repub ‘Dr.No’ Stops Veteran Suicide Prevention Act”
  1. Mike D says:

    I gather this man of principle voted against all previous legislation that was duplicative or already permitted by law.

  2. carol says:

    Jim Wright did a commentary on facebook on this, too bad it wasn’t on Stonekettle Station, because, as all of Jim’s commentaries are, it was good.

  3. leota2 says:

    Coburn is a a duplicitous moron under the guise of fiscal conservatism and his supposed christianity.
    Good riddance.

  4. Wugmump says:

    He should be slowly beaten senseless with his cowboy hat. Conservatives are waging war against middle-class America, or what’s left of us.
    “Die you gravy-sucking pigs!” ________ John Belushi

  5. Zyxomma says:

    What an @$$hat.

  6. juneaudream says:

    Sitting in my very, Very, modest American home situation..and wondering if this..’esteemed fellow’..has served in..the armed forces? Is his large..and his parents life lessons so shrill and threadbare..HE feels..that ‘dancing around’..the funding..will allow craft a financial..’win’? I guess..that allows him to ignore, feel no young men and women..who died to protect him n his. A natures way of saying..we, the family of mankind..left them..cold, hurt..and alone. Really are comfortable..with your legacy?