On Veterans Day, there’s no greater gift President-elect Trump can give our heroes languishing on waiting lists at VA hospitals than a competent leader.
Scott Brown, the former Bay State U.S. senator, is that leader. Trump should nominate him to head the Veterans Administration without pause.
Brown, a veteran who served proudly in the military for years retiring with the rank of colonel, has the credentials and passion to get the job done. I got to know Brown working on his campaign and his devotion to veterans is no secret.
“Sen. Brown has a deep concern for military men and women and a commitment to addressing their needs,” U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) told me yesterday. “With 35 years in the National Guard and having served on the Senate Armed Services and Veterans Affairs Committees, he would be an excellent choice to run the VA.”
I also spoke with Natalie Whittemore, the daughter of World War II Navy veteran Ned Bellatoni of Hingham, who praised Brown for helping get the medals her dad deserved after all the records perished in a fire.
“U.S. Sen. Brown led his very efficient team on a fact-finding mission and verified that my dad was eligible and had earned the Combat Air Medal for his World War II service” in Europe, she told me. “Sen. Brown and his staff also found that my dad earned several other medals (nine in total) that my dad was not aware of. Sen. Brown personally awarded my father his medals and it was really one of the most memorable moments in my father’s life.”
With all the problems plaguing the VA today, I asked Brown yesterday what veterans need. They need “the tools and resources to do their jobs when fighting for our country … and health care when they return from serving. They need to be our country’s priority,” he said.
Elaine White of Natick, the widow of a Marine combat veteran who served during the Korean War, said Brown won back her husband’s disability benefits. “He does not give up,” she said. “I will pray he gets the position.”
Clearly, Scott Brown is a problem-solver. What more could we ask for?