As the former chairman of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee and the author of more than a dozen laws to modernize, expand and improve the services provided by the Veterans Administration (VA), I see the need to review and evaluate existing programs to ensure that they align with the promise a grateful nation makes to those who wear and have worn the uniforms of the United States military. As President Lincoln so eloquently said at the end of the Civil War: “Let us strive…to care for him who shall have borne the battle…” a phrase later adopted as the motto of the VA.
That is why I co-sponsored and twice voted for the “Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans (SAV) Act.” This bipartisan legislation is named in honor of the late Iraq and Afghanistan War veteran whose story is not unfamiliar to many who have attempted to navigate the VA’s bureaucracy to receive the care they have earned. Clay Hunt was one of the many veterans who experience some form of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a result of their service, yet he did not receive adequate mental health care in the VA system and took his own life at the age of 28.
Monmouth County Clerk M. Clair French address the Monmouth GOP convention. Chairman Shaun Golden in background. photo by Art Gallagher
An impressive crowd of over 400 Monmouth Republican County Committee members gathered on Saturday morning to nominate their candidates for State Assembly, County Clerk and Freeholder. The size of the crowd was impressive not only because of the weather but because the results of the convention were a foregone conclusion as there were no challengers to the incumbent Assembly Members, Freeholder or Governor Chris Christie’s nominee for County Clerk.
Free of any competitive tensions, the mood at Colts Neck High School was upbeat, friendly and proud among the grassroots leaders who came out for Chairman Shaun Golden first nominating convention. Freeholder Deputy Director Serena DiMaso noted both the size and enthusiasm of the crowd. “This crowd is almost as large as last year’s convention when we had a competition for the freeholder nominations,” DiMaso said, “We’re in really great shape and that is a testament to Shaun’s leadership.”
Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ-4), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Sub-Committee on Africa and Human Rights, responded to the controversy about a remark concerning homosexual rights and human rights that he made during a hearing last week on combating violence inflicted by the terrorist group Boko Haram in Nigera with a statement issued to MoreMonmouthMusings:
“All governments have a duty to protect everyone and I am unequivocally opposed to acts of violence against anyone,” Smith said, “All individuals, including LGBT persons, should be treated with respect and compassion.”
N.J. Congressman Chris Smith, (R-4th District, left, concludes a meeting with staff members, legal assistant, Cate Bendetti center, and Foreign Affairs Council Akkison Hollabaugh, right, before heading to the Capitol Building. Washington, DC. Robert Sciarrino/The Star-Ledger
WASHINGTON — The U.S. House of Representatives today passed legislation to extend Megan’s Law beyond American borders. The bill, sponsored by U.S. Rep. Chris Smith (R-4th Dist.), would require the U.S. to tell other countries when convicted sex offenders are traveling there. It would also try to set up reciprocal notification systems so the U.S. is… Read the rest of this entry »
LAKEHURST — When President Obama visits Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst on Monday to thank American service members, U.S. Rep. Chris Smith wants the Commander in Chief to use the time to also reconsider plans phase out certain refueling aircraft. In a letter sent Friday to Obama, Smith (R-4th Dist.) said the “misguided proposal” of phasing out KC-10… Read the rest of this entry »
Congressman Chris Smith, chairman of the global human rights subcommittee in the House of Representatives and co-chairman of the U.S. Commission on China, held a hearing on Thursday entitled, ““Is Academic Freedom Threatened by China’s Influence on U.S. Universities?”
At issue is a growing number of Chinese educational partnerships started by U.S. universities and colleges, including exchange programs and satellite campuses in China and China’s recent Confucius Institutes in the U.S.
The collection brings together works created by over 450 New Jersey students and includes more than 60 life-size human forms which illustrate students’ artistic responses to learning about the genocide, the silence of the world, and the importance of becoming involved, concerned citizens.
“These are powerful expressions by young people who are concerned about a genocide that unfolded while the world watched,” said Smith, a longtime human rights advocate in Congress and chairman of the House Africa and global human rights subcommittee. “The pieces in this exhibition remind us that each of the hundreds of thousands of victims in Rwanda was an individual, worthy of dignity, whose precious life was cut short, who the world should have done more to save. If we cannot do more to prevent genocides in the future, ‘Never again’ will only be lip service. When so many innocent lives are at stake, we must do more. While remembering a genocide often invokes feelings of horror, this exhibition reminds us that hope is also crucial. We must have the hope that we can defeat the evil that is at the root of genocides and we must follow it with the will to act.”
Congressman Frank Pallone issued the following statement regarding the St. Louis County, Missouri Grand Jury’s decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown:
“The St. Louis County Grand Jury’s decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson is a failure of our justice system. The principle of ‘Equal Justice under Law’ must apply to all Americans. My thoughts and prayers are with Michael Brown’s family, especially his parents, who have endured such unimaginable pain and hardship over these past few months.”
Pallone’s statement is disgraceful and beneath his office. He did not sit on the Grand Jury and hear the evidence.
Monmouth County GOP Chairman Shaun Golden, Middlesex County GOP Chairman Sam Thompson and the New Jersey Republican Congressional Caucus members should start recruiting a candidate to defeat Pallone in 2016 and start raising money for that campaign immediately.
Pallone is a radical liberal extremist who does not represent the people of the 6th Congressional District. He can be defeated and he should be defeated. Defeating him will take a will, a plan and money. It can be done and it should be done.
A September 2014 report by an independent government watchdog confirmed that Obamacare is replete with abortion on demand and that it is often nearly impossible for consumers to determine whether the plan they are considering includes elective abortion. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) report detailed that over 1,000 Obamacare plans sold for 2014 include abortion on… Read the rest of this entry »