AKIN ALERT: Remembering our Heroes

The men and women of our Nation’s Armed Forces serve with distinction every day. Some have paid the ultimate price. Their families have lost loved ones, parents, children and siblings. We have all gained – and lost – true heroes.

As the father of three sons in the military, my respect for the members of our nation’s armed forces has only grown. Ordinary men and women perform extraordinarily in times of crisis. They go where they are sent. They use the equipment they are given and they do what they are told. They use their skills and judgment to perfom some of the most difficult tasks ever set before human beings – and they usually succeed.

The first priority of our government must be the defense of its people. That means defending those who defend us is among our highest responsibilities. Last week, my committee worked hard on the annual defense authorization bill, expecting that it would be brought to the floor before Memorial Day. This week, it came to the floor, but with an amendment that forced me to vote against a bill I had supported in committee, just days before. Sadly, some Congressional leaders demonstrated that they would rather use our service members in a social experiment. When they added language forcing a repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy – against the wishes of the generals and admirals who lead our military – I could not support the final legislation.

However, I am pleased to report that the legislation that passed contained many of the provisions I had fought for, including additional funding for F/A-18s.

As we remember the men and women of our armed forces this weekend, and especially those who have made the ultimate sacrifice, may we be humbled and grateful. And may we renew our determination to preserve liberty for future generations.


W. Todd Akin

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