An Open Letter to Senator McConnell and The U.S. Senate - Protect Our Troops

Dear Senator McConnell,

On behalf of my veteran service organization, United Soldiers and Sailors of America – USASOA, our staff, volunteers, supporters as well as other worthy VSO’s and grateful Americans – I urge you to immediately reconsider your objection to Senator McCaskill’s bill that would guarantee that our troops and their families would be paid on time. The current divisive political atmosphere in Washington should not harm the lives of our military and their families. We have millions of enlisted personnel, a majority of whom have families who live paycheck to paycheck. For them, the possibility that they may not be receiving their regular pay, is in and of itself creating an unnecessary, harmful physiological effect which may result in impacting military effectiveness and readiness for both deployed and state-side service members.

The American people will tolerate a certain amount of political discourse and wrangling, after all, our great history is fraught with such chaotic moments such as these. However, never before in our modern history has our military received such gratitude and appreciation from the American people for the incredible sacrifices that they make to keep us free and safe. Following your objection to Senator McCaskill’s bill to ensure that our military will be paid during this government shut down, you mentioned that the timing was not right for such a vote on the Senate floor.

Sir, there should never have been an objection in the first place. Our troops and their families must never be used as pawns on a chessboard however if that is the politics of the day, then they should be treated as kings and queens to be protected at all cost. Protecting their health, happiness, safety, and welfare is my organization's core mission and we depend on Congressional leadership to act accordingly. Therefore, I respectfully urge you to please walk down the hall from your office into the well of the Senate to seek unanimous support for a vote to ensure that our troops and their families will not be affected by this government shut down. Make it clear that the lives of our troops and those of their families and their children will never again be used or manipulated as a bargaining chip for either political party. Our service members defend the Constitution and our freedom, not a political party.

Today, you have the opportunity to use your voice and position to send a clear message to our troops who are serving us around the world and to the American people that the U.S. Senate will diligently ensure that the welfare of our service members will be exempted from this and any other possible and future government closures. Our service members and their families already sacrifice enough for our nation and to do less than what we are respectfully requesting is tantamount to allowing the anguish and apprehension they currently feel to continue. We are watching with great anticipation, hope, and desire that our leadership in the Senate will act accordingly and responsibly when it comes to supporting our military service members and their families – especially those who live paycheck to paycheck.

Senator McConnell, I thank you for taking the time to consider this urgent request and hope that our nation will soon come together in the spirit of harmony and unity which for over 200 years remains a shining example to the world.

Very Respectfully,

John Yori

President, USASOA