Montana Veterans: Trump & Congressman Zinke insult our service
HELENA – Veterans from Vietnam to the current war in the Middle East told Donald Trump and Congressman Ryan Zinke today that enough is enough – our veterans deserve better respect than what the two are offering.
“The hateful remarks from Donald Trump, the Republican candidate for President, about veterans and Gold Star families and Congressman Zinke’s blind allegiance to those awful ideals have pushed us to speak out,”said Staff Sgt. Josh Manning, who served in Iraq with Capt. Humayun Khan, whose family has been the target of some of Trump’s vitriol.
Diane Carlson-Evans, a combat nurse in Vietnam; John Hollow, a Navy SEAL during Vietnam; and Retired Lt. Col. Jim GIllison all have this message for Congressman Ryan Zinke: respect the veterans you’ve served with and denounce Trump.
“I am here today, to question why our Congressman Ryan Zinke, a brother veteran who continuously touts his veteran status as something to be rightfully proud of, supports Donald Trump as our next Commander-In-Chief of the United States,” said Carlson-Evans, who treated several Purple Heart-worthy injured veterans.
But that seems doubtful, as Manning pointed out, because Zinke himself has a terrible record when it comes to his statements and votes on veterans’ issues.
- Zinke demeans veterans who earn benefits. It was reported in 2014 that he receives approximately $1,950 per month in benefits, in addition to his pension, however he told the (delete: Los Angeles Times and the) Billings Gazette that he worries about the “economic slavery” of accepting government services. [Billings Gazette, 3/29/16]
- Zinke said to veterans: “Don’t be a victim” when he talked on SOFREP Internet radio in 2014. [SOFREP Internet Radio Program (24:45), 1/27/14]
- He’s missed at least a couple of veterans votes because he was too busy promoting himself on Fox News:
- On May 18, 2015, Zinke appeared on Fox News but missed a vote on a measure that would allow the VA to give preference to contracts who employ veterans when awarding a contract. He also missed a vote that would give the surviving spouses of veterans with small businesses who contract with the VA preferred status after the veteran’s death. [Rep Zinke press release, 5/19/16; CQ, 5/18/15; H.R. 1382, Vote 242, 5/18/15; CQ, 5/18/15; H.R. 1313, Vote 241, 5/18/15]
“Congressman Zinke doesn’t stand with veterans. He doesn’t stand with Montanans,” Manning said. “He stands alone for his own career and profit. It is beyond time for him to show some leadership or get out of the way for someone who can.”