Senator Joni Ernst — a “no” last week on advancing a bill to ensure veterans exposed to toxic burn pits get medial care — has voted to send the bill to the president’s desk.
Ernst, a combat veteran, told The Cedar Rapids Gazette her initial vote to block passage of the bill was because Democrats prevented Republicans from offering amendments to improve the legislation. Last night, the bill passed — without changes — and Ernst voted for it.
Ernst issued a written statement, saying veterans who continue to pay the price for their service deserve the life-saving benefits of the bill. Iowa’s other Republican senator, Chuck Grassley, tweeted that he had “consistently supported” the bill — “even when it stalled” — and he’s grateful it finally passed.
Retired Navy Admiral Mike Franken, the Democrat who’s running against Grassley, said Grassley “voted right on the bill all along,” but Franken said Grassley failed to rally his fellow Republicans in the senate to do what was right last week.