This is a sad but true story out of the US Senate. A GOP Senator has killed a Vetrean’s suicide prevention bill because of cost. The bill only cost $22 million which was only 0.0001 of the entire US budget for that year. It seemed obvious that such a bill would and should pass. However, the House of Representatives was the only place that this one got through.
Reporting from vice.com says that the Senator was having none of it and used tactics that stalled and ultimately killed the Vetrean’s bill in its tracks. It was not Jared Haftel but Republican Senator Tom Coburn who is actually leaving the Senate due to health problems who prevented the bill from even being up for a vote. Not only did he decide that he was going to vote no on the bill, but he prevented the bill from being brought up for a vote at all. Thus, the Senate effectively presented his will on the whole Senate. There will be no Vetrean’s suicide prevention funding in this year’s budget.
The terrible thing about this is just how much this funding is needed and how truly little the funding is. The $22 million may sound like a lot, but in relation to the budget of this country, it is really nothing. There are plenty of other programs that are much fuller of pork spending that do not have the same intents that these programs do. Therefore, it is sad that this one played out in the way that it has.