WASHINGTON – Promising to take care of military veterans is an easy win for presidential candidates.
All of them agree on the need to overhaul the scandal-riddled U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and end delays in accessing the health care that veterans were promised. This is especially a key issue in the South Carolina primary, where veterans make up 11 percent of the adult population.
White House hopefuls have stressed the issue in debates and town halls. But a closer look at their public platforms shows a vast discrepancy in the level of detail in their plans, ranging from footnoted documents of seven-step plans to bullet points to a single flashcard.
Which of the candidates have detailed plans that would address the kinds of problems faced by the Williams Jennings Bryan Dorn Medical Center in Columbia, South Carolina: long wait times for appointments, concerns about benefits and difficulty in promptly reaching VA representatives? The hospital was one of the most dire examples of the systemic issues facing the VA when 2014 investigations exposed that a number of veterans were dying after long waits and delayed care.