*For all press release inquiries, please reach out to Theresa Meyer (Theresa.Meyer@mail.house.gov)

WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Tom Emmer (MN-06) and Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Mike Bost (IL-12) hosted a roundtable discussion with Speaker Mike Johnson (LA-04) and Veteran Service Organizations (VSOs). Emmer, Bost, and Johnson affirmed their commitment to supporting our nation’s veterans and their families in a way that best meets their needs as leaders from VSOs outlined their organizations’ top priorities. The event was attended by Zimmerman veteran Keith Kiefer. Kiefer serves as National Commander for the National Association of Atomic Veterans.  

Emmer with Sixth District veteran Keith Kiefer 

“Our nation is indebted to our service members, veterans, and their families,”  said Emmer. “We were glad to highlight Keith’s service and his work in Minnesota and across the nation on behalf of the veteran community. The Sixth District’s more than 38,000 veterans deserve our continued support and straightforward access to the benefits they have earned. We will continue working with Chairman Bost and Speaker Johnson to provide for these heroes and their families.” 

Kiefer said, “It was an honor to be invited and attend the veterans’ stakeholder event hosted by Congressman Emmer. As the National Commander of the National Association of Atomic Veterans (NAAV), I, along with the other Veteran Service Organizations, believe the Members of Congress in attendance want to make a positive difference for the veterans and their families. Each represented organization had the opportunity to share their organization’s top legislative agenda, provide comments and ask questions. This open-office communication is a key component to solving veterans’ issues. I thank the members and VSOs for their contributions.” 

“As Chairman of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, I always appreciate hearing from our Veteran Service Organization partners to keep a pulse on what’s important to everyday veterans across the country,” said Chairman Bost. “I am grateful to my friends, our Whip Tom Emmer and Speaker Mike Johnson, for hosting this important stakeholder discussion today. We must continue fighting for the men and women who have served and conversations like this help to make that happen. Important work has been done by this majority, and I assure you we will hit the ground running next year to continue delivering for veterans, their families, and their survivors.” 

“America owes our veterans a limitless debt of gratitude for their service, and Congress has a moral obligation to pay it down,” said Speaker Johnson. “We are grateful to the many veterans’ service organizations who joined us for this roundtable, and I thank Whip Emmer and Chairman Bost for their efforts to support America’s veterans.” 

Emmer, Chairman Bost, and Speaker Johnson were joined by Chief Deputy Whip Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA) and Representatives Jack Bergman (R-MI), Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R-IA), Gregory F. Murphy (R-NC), Scott Franklin (R-FL), Derrick Van Orden (R-WI), Morgan Luttrell (R-TX), Keith Self (R-TX), and Jennifer Kiggans (R-VA). 

VSOs represented include America’s Warrior Partnership, AMVETS, Blinded Veterans Association, Blue Star Families, Disabled American Veterans, Elizabeth Dole Foundation, Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the U.S., Jewish War Veterans of the U.S.A, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, Military Officers Association of America, Mission Roll Call, National Association of Atomic Veterans, National Association of State Approving Agencies, Inc., National Defense Committee, National Organization of Veterans’ Advocates, Paralyzed Veterans of America, Student Veterans of America, The American Legion, The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Vietnam Veterans of America, and Wounded Warrior Project. 

Background 

This Congress, Emmer helped key veteran-focused bills pass the House floor. These include:

  • The RELIEVE Act, which will open up community care options to veterans for emergency treatment, allowing veterans in need to access care at local hospitals when they need it most.
  • The Wounded Warrior Access Act, which establishes as secure online resource for veterans to submit electronic requests for claim records, ending the antiquated requirement for veterans to go in-person to a VA facility or mail a form to request a paper copy of their claims.

In July, Emmer hosted an event with members of the Disabled American Veterans of Minnesota at VFW Post 428 to provide updates on the work being done to support disabled veterans and their families.

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