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Hypocrite Bathroom Seducer Sen. Larry Craig Also Likes to Shaft Veterans

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Message Michael Leon
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Via MAL Contends

Sen. Larry Craig is not your ordinary gay Republican looking for love in the toilet.

As the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs in 2005, Craig also helped engineer a secret end-run assisting the Bush administration's efforts to shaft veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) after their service.

“So the brave men and women who have served in Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq are honest enough to put themselves in danger in the defense of the United States, yet their sworn personal hearing testimony concerning the stressors they experienced in Vietnam, Afghanistan, or Iraq" is not sufficient to take on its face, editorializes the Paralyzed Veterans of America.

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But the American Enterprise Institute's (AEI) Dr. Sally Satel’s ethos that ridicules veterans diagnosed with PTSD (and seeking benefits) has permeated the Dept of Veterans Affairs, and Satel and the VA found a willing partner in Sen. Larry Craig. [The Post: "Psychiatrist Sally Satel, who is affiliated with the conservative American Enterprise Institute, said an underground network advises veterans where to go for the best chance of being declared disabled. The institute organized a recent meeting to discuss PTSD among veterans."]

In August 2005, the VA announced plans to review 72,000 PTSD cases with a 100 percent disability rating. But a torrent of criticism by veterans’ groups and Democrats forced the administration to back down.

The politics of the VA going after 72,000 veterans became too hot to handle. On Nov. 10, 2005, the VA announced that there would be “no across-the-board review of PTSD cases.”

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Just days later, Cheryl Reed of the Chicago Sun Times, broke a story detailing how the VA planned to implement a PTSD restructuring anyway, despite its announcement six days earlier.

The new PTSD-examination plan was released in a low, low-profile manner in a press release through Sen. Larry Craig (R-ID), then Chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.

No VA press conference, just a quiet, low-key way to furtively implement the AEI’s views on PTSD, while denying that this is what is happening.

If Craig wants to have sex with men, I'll fight for his right to do so. He has nothing to be ashamed of [though Larry should try bars, not bathrooms].

But Craig's real sin about which he should have been driven from office is screwing over our veterans who serve our country.

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Michael Leon is a writer living in Madison, Wisconsin. His writing has appeared nationally in The Progressive, In These Times, and CounterPunch. He can be reached at maleon64@yahoo.com.
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