Spouses of vets may get more aid

August 9, 2010

Foxx-sponsored bill would extend home-loan benefits

Published: August 9, 2010

More surviving spouses of veterans will be available for Veteran’s Affairs home loans under a bill now making its way through Congress.

The Disabled Veterans’ Surviving Spouses Home Loans Act, was introduced by Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., to fix what she describes as a loophole in veterans’ benefits.

VA loans are intended to help veterans or active-duty personnel buy and maintain homes. They can currently be granted to surviving spouses only if the service member’s death is determined to be directly connected to service disability.

But Foxx said service-related disabilities can often be factors contributing to deaths, even if doctors don’t directly attribute them as the cause.

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Foxx Honors Women Veterans at Arlington National Cemetery

May 21, 2009
Written by Adam Hicks
wednesday, may 20 2009

Congresswoman Virginia Foxx participated yesterday in the 12th Annual Women in the Military Wreath Laying Ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.

Foxx released a statement about these women saying, “Women have served our nation from its birth to the present and have willingly laid down their lives for the cause of liberty.  Today we give honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.”

Foxx’ spokesperson, Aaron Groen, said the ceremony not only focused on women who were killed in the line of duty, but those who are currently enlisted in the armed forces.

Napolitano Facing Republican Calls for Her Ouster

April 25, 2009

Obama’s Security Chief Ignites Firestorm by Warning of ‘Right-Wing’ Extremism in U.S.


April 23, 2009


Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is facing calls for her ouster from a handful of House Republicans in the wake of a department memo that warned of right-wing political extremism in the United States.

“To me, it looks like the extremists are those running the DHS,” said Rep. Michelle Bachmann, R-Minn. “An official document of the DHS lists right-wing extremists as ‘groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration,’ and includes those ‘rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority.’ So, apparently, according to Homeland Security Department, the American ideal of federalism is a threat to American ideals.”

Bachmann and Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., joined Rep. John Carter, R-Texas, the No. 6 Republican in the House leadership, on the House floor Wednesday evening to demand that Napolitano either resign or be fired by President Obama.

House Republican leadership aides expect Napolitano to survive calls for her ouster. But at the same time, they are happy to see criticism of Napolitano continue as Obama approaches the 100-day mark of his presidency.

House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, told reporters Thursday morning that he is sure the subject of the former Arizona governor will come up at the White House Thursday afternoon when Obama meets with congressional leaders of both parties.

“I think Secretary Napolitano has an awful lot of explaining to do,” said Boehner. “When you look at this report on right-wing extremism, it includes … about two- thirds of Americans, who, you know, who might go to church, who may have served in the military, who may be involved in community activities.

“It’s bizarre,” he added.

“I and my colleagues are trying to understand who wrote this report, why wasn’t it edited or– I just don’t understand how our government can look at the American people and say, “You’re all potential terrorist threats,'” said Boehner.

UPDATE: Despite Boehner’s initial confidence that Napolitano would come up during Thursday’s meeting with the president, Boehner spokeswoman Antonia Ferrier told ABC News after it concluded that the topic of the “right-wing” extremism report was not broached during a conversation which was “consumed” by other topics

Democrats are privately responding to criticism of Napolitano by pointing out that Republicans overlook that the Department of Homeland Security issued a report earlier this year warning that left-wing extremists are likely to increase the use of cyber attacks over the coming decade.

Napolitano’s defenders also note that the examination of domestic terror threats is a task that the Department of Homeland Security was given by Congress when President Bush was still in office.

The warning about right-wing extremism was contained in an April 7 intelligence assessment warning that the U.S. recession and the election of the nation’s first African-American president could be a powder keg for right-wing extremist groups. The memo also warned that proposed restrictions on firearms could lead some extremist organizations to begin stockpiling weapons and ammunition.

According to Matt Lloyd, a spokesman for Rep. Mike Pence, R-Ind., the chairman of the House Republican Conference, the portion of the report that fueled the most concern among congressional Republicans referred to military veterans.

The memo cautioned that returning veterans who had trouble readjusting could “lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone wolf extremists capable of carrying out violent attacks.”

While meeting with reporters on Thursday, Napolitano brushed off calls from some House Republicans for her to resign.

“I’ve already acknowledged that the extremist report that came out, well-intentioned as it was, was not well written. It did not pass our own internal processes. It should not have gone out in the form it did,” said Napolitano. “And I’ve already apologized to veterans who were offended by that.”

Napolitano said she will meet with the leadership of the American Legion, the national veterans group, on Friday.

Told that some Republicans think an apology is insufficient, Napolitano said, “I just would say to that: That’s what they’re going to get.”


Grover Norquist, the president of the conservative Americans for Tax Reform group and author of “Leave Us Alone,” responded to the DHS report by saying that Democrats should be worried about a political threat, not a security threat.

“It’s a little bit frightening, and I think the politicians are right to be a little bit scared at how much they’ve stirred up a hornet’s nest,” said Norquist.

ABC News’ Jason Ryan contributed to this report.

Appalachian alum among 3 Green Berets killed

October 2, 2008

Published: October 2, 2008

Updated: 08:01 am

The military says three Green Berets from Fort Bragg were killed this week when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb in Afghanistan.
The Army Special Operations Command said Wednesday that the deaths occurred Monday in Helmand province at the village of Yakchal. The soldiers were assigned to Company B, 1st Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group.

The soldiers were identified as Capt. Richard G. Cliff Jr., 29, of Mount Pleasant, S.C.; Sgt. 1st Class Jamie S. Nicholas, 32, of Maysel, W.Va.; and Sgt. 1st Class Gary J. Vasquez, 33, of Round Lake, Ill.
Cliff was a Special Forces team commander and received his commission in 2002 after graduating from Appalachian State University. He joined the Special Forces in July. He is survived by his wife, Stacy; son, Richard, both of Sanford; and his parents, Julie and Richard Sr. of Mount Pleasant, S.C.
Nicholas was a team weapons specialist who joined the Army in 1994 and joined the Special Forces in 2006. He is survived by his wife, Michelle; stepson, Brenton Troup; stepdaughter, Sharise Troup, all of Hope Mills; and his parents, Karen and Burke of Wallback, W. Va.

Vasquez was a team engineer who joined the Army in 2000 and became a Green Beret in 2004. He is survived by his wife, Sarah, of Raeford; his mother, Margaret Du Hasek of Highland, Ill.; and a brother, Barry Du Hasek, of Highland, Ill.


Dole, Hagan vie for favor among veterans

September 12, 2008

Dole, Hagan vie for favor among veterans

By MIKE BAKER Associated Press Writer

Published: Friday, September 12, 2008 at 8:30 p.m.
Last Modified: Friday, September 12, 2008 at 8:30 p.m.

The two leading candidates for the U.S. Senate jockeyed for favor among military veterans Friday as they hosted competing campaign events just miles apart…