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Currently showing results in the 116th Congress.

  • Bipartisan Tester, Young, Murphy Bill to Curb Veteran Homelessness Clears Key Hurdle

    (U.S. Senate) - A bipartisan bill introduced by U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Todd Young (R-Ind.), and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) to curb veteran homelessness is one step closer to becoming law after passing the U.S. House of Representatives yesterday 362-31. Studies show that veterans with Other-Than-Honorable (OTH) discharges are significantly more likely to experience homelessness than other veterans; even though only about five percent of separating service members receive an OTH discharg...

  • Tester, Lankford Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Strengthen Oversight for Veterans at VA

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and James Lankford (R-Okla.) are kicking off the new year with bipartisan legislation to strengthen oversight for veterans at the nation's second largest federal agency. Under current law, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Inspector General (OIG) does not have testimonial subpoena authority to compel former VA employees who have left federal service, former contractor personnel who performed work for the Department, or other po...

  • Tester Welcomes Moran Partnership on the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee

    (U.S. Senate) - Ranking Member Jon Tester (D-Mont.) today released the following statement following the confirmation of Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) as the 12th Chairman of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee: "As Chairman of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, I'm confident Senator Moran will continue his steadfast advocacy for this country's veterans. I look forward to hitting the ground running together on a number of legislative priorities, including our bipartisan Commander John S...

  • Tester, Hawley Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Ensure VA Infrastructure Better Serves Veterans

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) introduced a bipartisan bill to ensure U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) infrastructure is better suited to provide timely and quality health care to veterans across the country. The Build, Utilize, Invest, Lease, and Deliver (BUILD) for Veterans Act of 2019 would cut red tape, expedite Congress' approval process of VA medical leases and provide the Department with more flexibility to lease unused VA property and...

  • Tester Pays Tribute to Vietnam Veteran on Senate Floor

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senator Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Ranking Member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, took to the Senate floor yesterday to pay tribute to the life of Chief Warrant Officer Second Class William C. Ebeltoft, a decorated Vietnam veteran and Montana resident. Tester read a powerful family obituary written about Bill, which tells the compelling story of his life "before, during, and after service." "It's incredibly powerful," Tester said of the obituary. "Because quite frank...

  • Tester, Blackburn, Klobuchar Toxic Exposure Bill Heads to President’s Desk

    (U.S. Senate) - Bipartisan legislation from U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) to deliver relief to veterans exposed to toxic substances passed the Senate 86-8 as a part of this year's National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The Occupational and Environmental Transparency Health (OATH) Act now heads to the President's desk to be signed into law. The Senators introduced their legislation earlier this year, requiring the Department of D...

  • Tester, Thune, Brown, Perdue Introduce Bill to Recognize Unique Housing Needs of Veterans & Rural America

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), John Thune (R-S.D.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), and David Perdue (R-Ga.) introduced bipartisan legislation to ensure that the housing needs of veterans and folks in rural America are reflected when Federal agencies are setting policies that affect homeowners. Currently, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Rural Housing Service (RHS) are not represented on the Appraisal Subcommittee (ASC) of the Feder...

  • Tester, Rounds Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Establish Grant Program Honoring Veterans

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) introduced the Memorializing Veterans Act today, bipartisan legislation establishing a grant program to help honor the lives of our nation's veterans. The Veterans' Legacy Program (VLP) is an educational initiative from the National Cemetery Administration (NCA) under U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) which commemorates veterans interred in NCA cemeteries through partnerships with institutions of higher learning...

  • Tester, Sullivan Veteran Suicide Prevention Bill Heads to President’s Desk

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska) are today celebrating the unanimous passage of the Support for Suicide Prevention Coordinators Act a bipartisan, bicameral effort to help tackle one of the nation's most pressing health concerns- veteran suicide. The Senators' legislation requires the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to report on the responsibilities, workload, training, and vacancy rates of Suicide Prevention Coordinators at the Department of V...

  • Tester Statement on Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senator Jon Tester, Ranking Member and Montana's only member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, today released the following statement in honor of National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day: "78 years ago, Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor thrust the United States into World War II, marking 'a date which will live in infamy.' Beginning that day, Americans made tremendous sacrifices for our freedom, earning a place in history as this nation's Greatest Generation. Many of the...

  • Tester, Collins, Casey, Daines Fight to Protect Veterans from Predatory Pension Poachers

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Bob Casey (D-Pa.), and Steve Daines (R-Mont.) introduced legislation this week requiring the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to systematically track victims, scammers, and trends to proactively protect veterans and survivors across the country from predatory pension poachers. Our nation's aging veterans represent a segment of vulnerable individuals increasingly targeted by bad actors preying on the VA pension ben...

  • On Senate Floor, Ranking Member Tester Pays Tribute to Chairman Isakson’s Service to Veterans

    (U.S. Senate) - Ranking Member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee Jon Tester (D-Mont.) took to the Senate floor yesterday to pay tribute to Chairman Johnny Isakson's (R-Ga.) 45-year political career, legislative accomplishments, and their continued friendship. "The reason we're all here today is because Johnny Isakson is a very special guy and he's special for a number of reasons," Tester said. "He treats everybody with respect and because of that, everybody treats him with respect&helli...

  • Tester, Colleagues Spearhead Legislation to Improve Transportation Services for Rural Veterans

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) are spearheading bipartisan legislation to help rural veterans travel to and from their medical appointments more easily. The Senators introduced the Rural Veterans Travel Enhancement Act of 2019 today, which will expand successful initiatives that provide veterans living in rural areas transportation services and reimbursemen...

  • Tester Urges Timely and Confidential Mental Health Care for Servicemembers in Need

    (Big Sandy, Mont.) - Following reports of delayed care, Ranking Member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee Jon Tester (D-Mont.) is urging the Department of Defense (DoD) to provide timely and confidential health care for servicemembers suffering from mental health conditions. Reports show that servicemembers often do not receive timely care after identifying mental health concerns to providers. In one recent case, a servicemember detailed his personal experience with the Defense Health ...

  • Tester Pushes VA to Better Serve Montana’s Native Veterans at Indian Affairs Committee Hearing

    (U.S. Senate) - At a Senate Committee on Indian Affairs hearing, U.S. Senator Jon Tester (D-Mont.) questioned representatives from Montana Tribes and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) on their efforts to address the unique needs of Native American veterans. While Native American veterans serve in the military at a higher rate than any other ethnic demographic in the United States, they often face obstacles when seeking housing, employment, and quality health care. During the hearing...

  • Tester, Colleagues Introduce First-Ever Bipartisan Bill to Protect Student Veterans from Predatory For-Profit Institutions

    (U.S. Senate) - Closing out the week of Veterans Day, U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Tom Carper (D-Del.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), and Bill Cassidy (R-La.) introduced the Protect Veterans' Education and Training Spending (Protect VETS) Act of 2019 to protect student veterans from predatory for-profit institutions. The Protect VETS Act is the first bipartisan bill introduced in the Senate that would protect military and veteran students by closing the 90/10 loophole and requiring for-profit...

  • On Senate Floor, Tester Calls on Trump Administration to ‘Do the right thing’ by Expanding List of Medical Conditions for Veterans Exposed to Agent Orange

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senator Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Ranking Member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee yesterday called on the Trump Administration to take action on behalf of thousands of Vietnam Veterans across the country by expanding the Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) list of medical conditions associated with exposure to Agent Orange to include Parkinsonism, Bladder Cancer, Hypertension, and Hypothyroidism. Tester took to the Senate floor in support of an effort to expand the l...

  • Tester on Veterans Day: ‘We have a responsibility to those who protect our freedom’

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senator Jon Tester, Ranking Member and Montana's only member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, today released the following statement to commemorate Veterans Day: "On Veterans Day, we pause to remember our veterans, and honor the enduring sacrifice of our men and women in uniform, as well as their families. They represent the very best of this country, and their sacrifices have come at a high cost. There are lives lost, physical injuries, and far too often, unseen ...

  • Tester, Moran Lead Bipartisan Call to Action for Better Patient Safety and Oversight at VA Facilities

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) are leading eight colleagues in a bipartisan call to action following alarming incidents of veterans receiving inadequate care or mistreatment at the Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) medical facilities. In a letter to VA Secretary Wilkie today, the Senators voiced their concerns over serious, high-profile cases of veteran abuse and employee misconduct within VA facilities across the country. "We are concerned abo...

  • ‘Stop turning your backs on Vietnam vets who are suffering’ Tester, Colleagues Slam Acting White House Chief Mulvaney

    (U.S. Senate) - Ranking Member Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and his colleagues are refusing to back down from their fight to ensure Vietnam veterans suffering from toxic exposure to Agent Orange receive necessary benefits and care from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Tester led four colleagues on the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee in a letter to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) today urging Director and Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney to stop blocking the inclusio...

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