Monday, April 21, 2008

What's Steve King's Problem With The National Guard?

Western Iowa Congressman Steve King is the only Hawkeye State lawmaker opposing a request to give the head of the National Guard a seat at the table with the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

U.S. Sen Charles Grassley and U.S. Tom Latham both joined Democratic colleagues in supporting the measure which recognizes the enormous contributions of the Guard. King sees it differently, though, as he told The Des Moines Register.

(U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley, (U.S. Sen. Tom) Harkin and Grassley, along with three House members - Tom Latham, Leonard Boswell and Dave Loebsack - signed on to a letter to the leadership of the Armed Services Committee in both chambers. The letter cites these problems as well as delays in a post-deployment benefit that had been promised by the Pentagon.

So they ask that as the defense authorization bill is written this year, the chief of the National Guard Bureau be made a full member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Rep. Steve King was the only member of the delegation who did not sign on to the letter. Asked for comment, King said: "Rep. Braley and all Democrats in the Iowa delegation do not support the troops and their mission. We will not be led to victory by those who have declared defeat."

There was no elaboration, so it's not clear why King would say that in connection with this particular initiative.

How exactly is this anti-troop? Does this, Mr. King, mean Grassley and Latham aren't patriotic or somehow not supporting the military?

Rob Hubler, Democratic candidate for Iowa’s Fifth Congressional District, says King is obligated to elaborate on why he refused to sign a letter asking Congress’ Armed Services Committees that the head of the National Guard Bureau become part of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

“Now we in the Fifth District can lay claim to having the only member of the state’s delegation refuse to support the brave men and women who chose to serve in Iowa’s National Guard not to mention overseas in Iraq,” Hubler said.

The only statement the incumbent gave for not signing on to the request is his belief that Democrats do not support U.S. troops.

“He has got to do better than just use an extreme talking point that is untrue and worn out,” Hubler said. “If you want to really represent the people of western Iowa, including those who wear the uniform of our armed forces, you must give a more detailed reason for such an irresponsible decision. And by the way, where is his criticism of fellow Republican lawmakers Tom Latham and Chuck Grassley who understand this is an issue that transcends party lines?”

“Furthermore, this is not even an issue over the war in Iraq, it is a policy issue over the inner workings of a government office and making it more efficient,” Hubler added. “This is to ensure that Iowa’s guardsmen and women have a voice with the other military branches and that they receive the benefits promised to them for enlisting. As the next Representative of Iowa’s Fifth District, I will bring Real Representation to those who served or are actively serving our great nation.”

Hubler is a Vietnam-era veteran of the U.S. Navy.

1 comment:

Craig Williams said...

Another anti-King article by Douglas Burns? What a surprise.

Those of us who live in Carroll County know that Doug burns has no credibility when it comes to stories about our Congressman, Steve, King and that Burns comes with a liberal agenda: note the right hand margin which shows a picture of Burns interviewing his idol, Barrack Obama, and an icon with a link to his anti-Steve King book - not worth the paper it was written on.

Here's a question: Did Burns try to contact the Congressman for a comment? It's obvious that Burns contacted his opponent. Perhaps Burns did, perhaps Burns did not. I don't know. But I'd lay pretty good odds that he didn't bother.