The bond between our forces and our citizens must be a sacred trust. And for me and my administration, upholding that trust is not just a matter of policy, it is not about politics. It is a moral obligation.But, apparently, the President didn't really mean what he said; he was only kidding.
As a nation, we are facing some tough choices as we put our fiscal house in order. But I want to be absolutely clear. We cannot, we must not, we will not balance the budget on the backs of our veterans. As Commander-in-Chief, I won’t allow it.
From the USA Today:
President Obama would raise pharmacy co-pays for military families and hike medical coverage fees for military retirees as part of his debt-reduction plan unveiled Monday.Video: "We will not balance the budget on the backs of our veterans":
"We are all in this together, and all of us must contribute to getting our economy moving again and on a firm fiscal footing," President Obama said in a statement regarding his latest economic plans.
Service groups representing millions of veterans moved quickly to criticize the proposals. Peter Gaytan, executive director of the American Legion, which has 2.4million veterans as members, said his organization opposes any hikes without offsetting cost-of-living increases in pensions.
Veterans of Foreign Wars, with 1.5million members, and the Military Officers Association of America, also oppose the changes...
The Obama plan would introduce a $200 annual fee for retired military families who wish to continue with Tricare-for-Life program that supplements Medicare for retirees over 65...
The administration also wants to encourage military families and retirees to use less expensive options when buying prescriptions under current coverage. The deficit plan would eliminate co-pays for generic mail-order drugs, while instituting a percentage co-pay rather than a small flat fee for drug store purchases...
On a subject that has upset military careerists, the administration is looking to save money by revamping the Defense Department pension plan. Obama calls for a commission to produce changes to the current system.
The Pentagon would then modify as it sees fit and — just as previous administrations dealt with the controversial issue of base closures — the retirement reforms would have to be accepted without changes for approval by Congress.