Commentary: To whom do we owe more – our vets or immigrants in custody?

Recently, the House of Representatives passed a bill (HR3525) that would require the federal government to create a universal electronic medical records system for the benefit of individuals in the custody of the Border Patrol (illegal immigrants) within 90 days.

It is important that doctors treating any patient know all that patient’s medical issues, prescribed medications and health history

In fact, the Veterans Administration has been working to establish such a system for our veterans and patriots who have been injured in combat or who develop health issues. Today, neither the Department of Defense nor the Veterans Administration has such a system in place. In fact, as ridiculous as it sounds, the experts have said it will take another nine years to fully complete the systems for both agencies.

Jane Brady

Many in Congress recognized it was unfair to make our veterans wait for a system while giving priority funding to implement a system for immigrants presently in custody.

So, there was a motion made on the floor to amend the implementation of such a system for illegal immigrants and give veterans priority to get their system completed first.

The motion to give our patriots and veterans priority over illegal immigrants failed. Two hundred and twelve Democrats, including our representative, Lisa Blunt Rochester, voted against our veterans!

Further, the requirement to create this system is an unfunded mandate.

It would force the Department of Homeland Security to divert funds from other agency efforts, such as border security, human and drug trafficking efforts and natural disaster response.

Frankly, these Democrats have the nation’s priorities backwards. Our veterans have earned the right to the best health care available. They have made sacrifices for all of us and the safety of this nation. It is wrong for them to have to wait for nine years to have a modern electronic medical records system available to their doctors so they can provide the very best treatment.

It is worse to support a policy that places our veterans needs behind those of illegal immigrants.

For too long, our representatives in Congress have voted without much public awareness about their words and their actions. We need to stand up for our veterans and say enough is enough.

Jane Brady was elected to three terms as Delaware’s attorney general and served a 12-year term as a judge in the Delaware Superior Court. She currently serves as chairwoman of the Delaware Republican Party.

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