July 28, 2022/Media, Press

Chairman Hinojosa and Jay Kleberg Release Statements on Ted Cruz and John Cornyn Voting Against Lifesaving Measures for Texas Veterans Exposed to Toxins and Burn Pits

AUSTIN, Texas — Today, Texas Democratic Party Chairman Gilberto Hinojosa released the following statement on Senators Ted Cruz and John Cornyn voting against the Sgt. 1st Class Heath Robinson Honoring Our PACT Act:

“There are few political moves that are as heinous, as egregious, as rage-inducing, as using servicemembers or veterans as political pawns. But that’s exactly what Senators Cruz and Cornyn did last night.

“Ted Cruz and John Cornyn – the former of whom had time today to tweet memes, Fox News clips, and promote his podcast; the latter of whom had time to tweet or retweet dozens of unrelated posts since the vote – should immediately explain this shamelessly partisan vote to the hundreds of thousands of Texas veterans demanding answers.

“Texas’ servicemembers and veterans are the best and bravest among us. We owe our freedom and liberty to their courage. Giving them necessary, lifesaving healthcare after their service is the absolute bare minimum we owe them in return – but apparently, even that would be too grand a gesture for Senators Cruz and Cornyn.”

In addition, Jay Kleberg, Democratic Nominee for Texas Land Commissioner – a position that also serves as Chair of the Veterans Land Board and oversees the majority of Texas’ state veteran serving institutions – released the following statement after going to Washington, D.C. to rally for the bill’s passage:

“Today, I was proud to stand with a host of veterans’ organizations in our nation’s Capital to encourage the Senate to pass the Honoring Our PACT Act. The men and women who defended our nation deserve better than political games and partisan politics. 

“By voting against cloture on this legislation, our Senators are turning their backs on our veterans and denying them the care they need to survive. The PACT Act would expand healthcare coverage for more than 3 million veterans who were exposed to toxins and burn pits during their service. Texas has the most Veterans on the national burn pit registry — our Veterans had our back, it’s time for us to have theirs.”

According to the Military Times, the PACT Act “is the culmination of years of work by advocates to improve health care and benefits for veterans suffering injuries from burn pit smoke, Agent Orange spraying and other military contaminant exposure. It has been widely celebrated as a potential landmark legislative victory in veterans policy.”

The outlet goes on to write: “If it becomes law, about one in five living American veterans could benefit from the PACT Act.”