Washington Post columnist Chuck Lane noted Sunday that the Veterans Administration scandal represents “a huge setback” for the Obama administration’s effort to turn a “younger, more diverse” military into a Democratic political stronghold.
Lane appeared on Fox News Sunday to discuss the enormous VA appointment backlog, which has seen some veterans die while waiting for care. Lane noted that veterans — most of whom are older conservatives — occupy “an interesting place” by being dependent on big government for nearly all of their healthcare needs.
He also explained the rather strange politics surrounding the scandal — where Democrats attack a well-established bureaucracy, while Republicans promise to reform a broken government entity.
“It’s awkward for Republicans to be in the position of saying, ‘We’ll make big government work better,’” he claimed, “because usually their position is privatize, make smaller government work. So I think that’s kind of the jam the Republicans are in.”
“Now, of course, President Obama has been pushing very hard — his wife has been working with military families and so forth — trying to sort of turn veterans into a Democratic group, based on the younger, more diverse military that we have,” Lane added. “And this is a huge setback to that effort.”
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