FOR THOSE 73 DEMOCRATS WHO SOLD THEIR VOTE TO THE BANKING INDUSTRY
Meet Robert Loria (not pictured), a combat Vet who fought in the Iraq war, had to pay for his own equipment, and still got his limbs blown off. Now the Army is garnishing this man's check for housing (that they are supposed to furnish), his protective equipment (which was probably responsible for saving his life and resulting in his limbs being blown to hell and beyond) and basically, for serving his country.
Hat tip to Steve Gillard.
By Donna St. George
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, October 14, 2005; Page A01
His hand had been blown off in Iraq, his body pierced by shrapnel. He could not walk. Robert Loria was flown home for a long recovery at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, where he tried to bear up against intense physical pain and reimagine his life's possibilities.The last thing on his mind, he said, was whether the Army had correctly adjusted his pay rate -- downgrading it because he was out of the war zone -- or whether his combat gear had been accounted for properly: his Kevlar helmet, his suspenders, his rucksack.
But nine months after Loria was wounded, the Army garnished his wages and then, as he prepared to leave the service, hit him with a $6,200 debt. That was just before last Christmas, and several lawmakers scrambled to help. This spring, a collection agency started calling. He owed another $646 for military housing."I was shocked," recalled Loria, now 28 and medically retired from the Army. "After everything that went on, they still had the nerve to ask me for money."
Although Loria's problems may be striking on their own, the Army has recently identified 331 other soldiers who have been hit with military debt after being wounded at war. The new analysis comes as the United States has more wounded troops than at any time since the Vietnam War, with thousands suffering serious injury in Iraq or Afghanistan."This is a financial friendly fire," charged Rep. Thomas M. Davis III (R-Va.), chairman of the House Committee on Government Reform, which has been looking into the issue. "It's awful." Davis called the failure systemic and said military "pay problems have been an embarrassment all the way through" the war.
I'm sorry, but Davis was one of the GOP thugs that railroaded this Bankruptcy Bill through. And the Army probably thought to cash in before Loria even thought about Bankruptcy. This poor guy is trying to put his life back together. Maybe the picture I posted is an image the 73 Democrats who crossed the aisle and voted for this bill should have, as the ramifications of their votes come home to roost.