Dear Speaker McCarthy,

We, Veterans and Military Families, and those who support them feel compelled to write to you and your conference after your vote to decimate the Department of Veterans Affairs with a 22 percent funding cut, and your further brinkmanship to send the country into default, which would similarly threaten Veterans, Military families, and Troops.

Let us be entirely clear: Veterans earned the care they receive through the VA, and that care is a sacred promise to them. If you honor those who served and their families who’ve sacrificed so much, you will agree to allow the United States to pay its bills without delay or hostage-taking.

As VA Secretary McDonough made clear, your dangerous cuts to the VA would mean a reduction of 30 million outpatient visits for Veterans and as many as 81,000 jobs cut in the Veterans Health Administration. It would also increase wait times for care, cripple telehealth, and halt the construction of facilities that are desperately needed. You and your conference are threatening the very lives of Veterans.

We understand that your conference’s new talking point is that your plan would not cut Veterans' care. We take offense at that utter lie. Not only does the plan do nothing to protect Veterans' care from your spending cuts, but it also claws back $2 billion given to the VA under the American Rescue Plan.

Worse, even if you dropped these horrific cuts to Veterans' care from your proposal, your threat to stop the United States from paying its bills would throw our country into default, which would also decimate Veterans’ care and renege on our commitment to those who’ve served. Additionally, a default would have tragic consequences for our Troops and their families.

Paychecks for Troops could be delayed. Pensions for Veterans and Gold Star families may halt. Benefit payments, like under the GI Bill could stop. Construction on Military facilities would grind to a halt. Services for Military Families on bases here and abroad would face significant interruption. The list goes on and on.

Our demand is simple: Stop it.

Stop threatening our Veterans, who’ve given more to this country than you ever will. Stop putting the livelihoods of our Troops, Veterans, and Military Families under threat for political games. Let America pay its bills, fund the Military and VA, and get serious about the many other issues facing us.

We hope you will add your name.