President Bush landed on Eielson AFB today on his way to China for the opening of the Olympics, among other stops. Here is the transcript of his remarks in Alaska Politics.
And here is the comment that had me running for the toilet:
The United States military has had no better supporter and stronger friend than Senator Ted Stevens. Thank you for coming, Senator. (Applause.) Thank you for bring your daughter. Nothing wrong with a father bringing his daughter to an event like this.
Here's reality, from an AK Dems Press Release:
“ Alaska ’s military families deserve more from Senator Stevens than a photo-op with the President,” said Bethany Lesser, spokeswoman for the Alaska Democratic Party. “Just last week, Stevens voted against funding for our troops. The brave men and women of the military put their lives on the line to protect us and keep our families safe, and we can never do enough to repay them for their service. Thursday, Stevens voted against equipment. He voted against a pay raise. He voted against healthcare for servicemembers and their families. This vote is inexcusable.”
The National Defense Authorization Bill for Fiscal Year 2009 included provisions which would have:
Authorized a 3.9 percent across-the-board pay raise for military personnel. [Senate Armed Services Committee Press Release, 5/1/08]
Authorized $26.1 billion for the Defense Health Program, which includes $1.2 billion to reverse the Bush administration’s proposal to raise fees on troops and their families.[Senate Armed Services Committee Press Release, 5/1/08]
Authorized $3 billion in funding to protect troops in Iraq and Afghanistan from improvised explosive devices (IED).[Senate Armed Services Committee Press Release 5/1/08]
· Authorized active-duty end strengths for the Army and Marine Corps to increase by 7,000 soldiers and 5,000 marines from 2008 levels and an increase of 3,371 full-time personnel for the Army National Guard and the Army Reserve. [Senate Armed Services Committee Press Release, 5/1/08]
· Required the Secretaries of Defense and Veterans Affairs to continue the operations of the Senior Oversight Committee to oversee implementation of Wounded Warrior initiatives.[Senate Armed Services Committee Press Release, 5/1/08]
· Fully funded Army readiness and depot maintenance programs to ensure that forces preparing to deploy are trained and their equipment is ready.[Senate Armed Services Committee Press Release, 5/1/08]
I have repeatedly highlighted on this blog how Ted Stevens has one of the worst records with Veteran's organizations. His grade according to Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, (a non-partisan, non-profit organization) is the same as Senators John McCain and Lisa Murkowski--a "D".
Can we please stop with the "Stevens...veteran's frieeeeennnnnddd" bullshit?
On another subject--why did Bush make this comment about Stevens and his daughter? "Thank you for bring your daughter. Nothing wrong with a father bringing his daughter to an event like this." Was he trying to insinuate that Dems would have a problem with it?