More than 100,000 Veterans Hired Through Virginia Program

More than 100,000 veterans have been hired through a Virginia program that educates and trains veterans and helps connect them with employers, Gov. Glenn Youngkin announced.

Virginia Values Veterans, which is run by the Virginia Department of Veteran Services, started in 2012. According to a news release, the program works with employers to develop long-term strategies and best practices to recruit, hire and retain veterans. The department also works with more than 2,100 businesses, educational institutions and state and local government agencies.

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Gov. Ron DeSantis Announces Plan to Recruit and Retain Public School Teachers, Calls Florida ‘The State Where Woke Goes to Die’

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) announced a plan to recruit public school teachers from other sectors of the community and retain effective teachers who can apprentice new recruits.

In a press conference Tuesday, DeSantis discussed three proposals he is presenting for Florida’s 2023 legislative session, all of which seek to recruit “the best and brightest” teachers in the state’s public school classrooms.

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Biden Signs Funding Bill for Veterans Exposed to Toxins

President Joe Biden signed the veterans health care bill known as the PACT Act Wednesday, expanding health care benefits for veterans exposed to toxins.

After a short struggle between Senate Democrats and Republicans, the PACT Act has been signed into law and will offer benefits and services to more than five million veterans exposed to toxins during their time of service.

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Governor Glenn Youngkin Donates Salary to Virginia Veterans Services Foundation

Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin elected to donate his second-quarter salary to the Virginia Veterans Services Foundation, a group that helps fund various veteran-focused services in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

The donation, which totaled $43,750, follows previous donations of his gubernatorial salary and Youngkin’s commitment to assist individuals who have served our country.

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Kay Kirkpatrick Assesses State-Run Veteran Nursing Homes for Improvements

The Georgia State Senate’s office announced that State Senator Kay Kirkpatrick (R-Marietta), chair of the Senate Committee on Veterans, Military, and Homeland Security, has been appointed to the new Subcommittee on Veteran Nursing Facilities.

“I am honored to serve as chair of the Senate Committee on Veterans, Military, and Homeland Security as we work to ensure our service members get the best quality of life possible,” Congresswoman Kirkpatrick said.

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Veteran-Benefit Bill That Would’ve Facilitated Miscellaneous Spending Blocked; Pennsylvania Senator Toomey Urges Refocusing It

On Wednesday, a U.S. Senate vote to proceed with veteran-benefits legislation failed to receive the 60 votes needed for cloture, as Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) and other fiscal conservatives noted the PACT Act would have permitted up to $400 billion to be spent on unrelated programs.

Earlier this week, Toomey urged Senate colleagues to accept his proposed amendment to keep the bill focused entirely on aiding those who served in the Armed Forces.

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Senator Ron Johnson Calls for Improved Care of Veterans from the Department of Veterans Affairs

Senator Ron Johnson and other colleagues issued a letter to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs Denis R. McDonough over concerns about access to health care for veterans across the country.

According to the letter from the group, the federal agency has subjected veterans to long waiting periods and is not following guidance from federal statute.

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Actor Gary Sinise to Relocate Foundation from California to Tennessee

Actor Gary Sinise, who played “Lieutenant Dan” in the hit move “Forrest Gump,” is relocating his foundation from California to Nashville, Tennessee.

The organization, entitled the Gary Sinise Foundation, is veteran-focused and has a mission to support “unique programs designed to entertain, educate, inspire, strengthen, and build communities” for those who have served our country.

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Tennessee Republicans Fight for Expanded Burial Access for Veterans

Republican members of Tennessee’s congressional delegation sent a letter to the Department of Veterans Affairs and demanded a solution to the lack of burial access for veterans.

According to the lawmakers, only two of Tennessee’s five national veterans cemeteries have burial space available, which could be filled quickly.

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Wisconsin Rep. Fitzgerald Introduces Motion to Protect Veteran Benefits from Biden Vaccine Mandate

Wisconsin Representative Scott Fitzgerald (R-WI-05) introduced a motion to protect veteran G.I. Bill benefits from the Biden Administration’s COVID vaccine mandate. Fitzgerald shared his concerns on the floor, saying, “the Secretary of Defense issued a directive requiring mandatory COVID vaccination for all service members, including those in the Ready Reserve, and the National Guard. Despite the challenges this vaccine mandate currently faces in court, the Defense Department has proceeded to discharge those who refuse the vaccine.”

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As Virginia Legislative Session Begins, Bills to Increase School Security Weighed

As the 2021-2022 legislative year begins in Virginia, one bill would mandate security protocols for school board meetings statewide.

HB 12 says schools would be required to “limit to the lowest feasible number the entry points in each public school building in the local school division” and “ensure that each individual who seeks to enter any school building in the local school division is screened with a handheld metal detector wand by a school security officer or another appropriate school board employee who is appropriately trained in such method of screening.”

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Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs on OSHA Mandates, Football, and Helping Veteran’s Mental Health in Tennessee

Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs to the newmakers line to discuss the OSHA employer vaccine mandates, football, and mental health in Tennessee.

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Veterans Group Says Biden Administration Undermining Trump-era ‘Mission Act,’ Hurting Veterans in Arizona

Man in uniform saluting

Under the Trump administration, the VA Mission Act (VAMA) was enacted in 2018 to provide veterans access to healthcare outside of the Veterans Administration healthcare system in order to provide more options and speed up accessibility to medical care. Unfortunately, veterans are reporting that the VA under the Biden administration has cut back on that expansion.

VAMA allowed veterans who could not get a medical appointment within 20 days or who had to drive more than 30 minutes to a VA facility to use alternate private healthcare providers instead. This was crucial, because veterans were dying while stuck on waiting lists for medical treatment, Josh Stanwitz of Concerned Veterans for America (CVA) told The Arizona Sun Times.

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University of Tennessee System Proposes New Initiative to Offer Veterans In-State Tuition Rate

On Veterans Day this week, the University of Tennessee announced a new proposed initiative that would allow military-affiliated students–veterans, active-duty military personnel, reservists, Tennessee National Guard members, and Army and Air Force ROTC cadets to attend a UT institution of their choosing at the in-state tuition rate, according to a press release.

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Facebook Buys up the Outstanding Invoices of Minority-Owned Small Businesses

Facebook is spending $100 million to buy up the outstanding invoices of small businesses owned by women, racial minorities, veterans, disabled people and LGBTQ+ people, the company announced last week.

The Invoice Fast Track Program allows certain “small, midsize and diverse-owned businesses” to submit outstanding invoices to Facebook. The tech giant then buys the invoices, giving the business cash immediately, and the business’ customers pay Facebook instead.

The program is designed to help “diverse-owned” businesses improve their cash flow and hire more employees, according to the program’s description.

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Study: Virginia Is the 10th Most Patriotic State

Virginia is the 10th-most patriotic state, according to a WalletHub study that looks at citizens’ civic and military engagement. Montana, Alaska, and Maryland make up the top three, while New York, Florida, and Connecticut are the U.S.’ least-patriotic states, according to the study. High military engagement in Virginia helped boost the commonwealth’s score despite a mediocre civic engagement score.

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Mayor Andy Ogles: ‘Tennessee Has Become a Magnet State for Illegals’

Tuesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles in studio to weigh in on the rise of illegal migrants and refugees in the state and how they are the prioritized recipients of social benefits.

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Commentary: Conservatives and Republicans Must Reclaim Memorial Day

Veteran cemetery with table set for lives lost who served America

In the face of the Far Left’s attempts to rewrite American history through the now-discredited 1619 Project and Critical Race Theory, Republicans and conservatives must reclaim the key dates and events in American history and there is no better place to start than Memorial Day 2021.

Memorial Day was created not as a “holiday” or an excuse for corporate merchants to advertise sales, but as a solemn commemoration of the dead of both sides in the American Civil War.

In that context Memorial Day commemorates a number of constitutional conservative values, not the least of which is the inviolability of the Constitution itself.

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Commentary: Celebrating Our Heroes on Armed Forces Day

Close-up of military helmets

Every third Saturday in May, America comes together to celebrate Armed Forces Day in honor of the brave men and women who serve in the U.S. military.

May 15, 2021 is the 71st anniversary of the establishment of Armed Forces Day.  This commemorative holiday was established by President Harry Truman in 1950 following the passage of the National Security Act in 1947. 

At the end of World War II and the onset of the Cold War, the United States Congress and the Truman administration recognized that an overhaul of our national security, intelligence, and defense apparatuses were needed for America to defeat the expanding threat of communism.  The National Security Act established the National Security Council, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Defense, and the Department of the Air Force.  It also unified and restructured the U.S. military by moving the War Department, Navy Department, and Air Force under the direction of the new Department of Defense.  

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Gov. Whitmer Announces Bipartisan Legislation to Ease Professional Licensing Restrictions for Veterans/Active-Duty Personnel/Dependents

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer convened a news conference Tuesday to announce the introduction of bipartisan legislation to ease professional licensing restrictions for military personnel, veterans and their families in Michigan.

The governor called the package a piece of “crucial legislation” that will provide military families the “support they need.”

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Tennessee Star National Correspondent Neil W. McCabe Gives Inside Take on Anonymously-Sourced Atlantic Story Attacking Trump

Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed National Correspondent Neil W. McCabe to the show to discuss The Atlantic Story claiming Trump made disparaging remarks about US military members.

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Rep. Green Seeks Assistance for Veterans Exposed to Toxins During Deployment to Uzbekistan

U.S. Rep. Dr. Mark Green (R-TN-07) on Thursday helped introduce a bipartisan resolution directing the Secretary of Defense to assess the toxic exposure of American military service members deployed to Karshi Khanabad Air Base (K2) in Uzbekistan.

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Gary Sinise Foundation Seeks to Build Specially Modified Home for Wounded Ohio Veteran

Ohio veteran Kenton Stacy is a good example of why Time magazine missed the mark in naming its 2019 person of the year.

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Rep. Mark Green to Attend Memorial Day Events in Franklin, Decaturville

  U.S. Rep. Dr. Mark Green (R-TN-07) said in a press release that he has made it a priority throughout his time in Congress to honor the fallen and support Gold Star spouses and families and to honor veterans in general. His first bill in Congress was a bipartisan piece of…

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Steve Gill Talks to Colonel Mark Tillman About His Time on Air Force One Circa 9-11 and Love of Country

  On Thursday’s Tennessee Star Report with Steve Gill and Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 am to 8:00 am-Steve Gill spoke to Colonel Mark Tillman who is in town to attend the Reboot Alliance luncheon in effort to help raise money for veterans and…

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New Bill Provides Tax Exemption for Ohio’s Disabled Veterans

A bill currently under consideration by the Ohio Legislature would exempt disability service pay, made to honorably discharged veterans, from state income taxes. House Bill 18 (HB 18) was introduced to the Ohio House of Representatives last month. Wednesday, the bill finally came to a vote where it passed by an…

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Tennessee Lawsuit Seeks to Hold 3M Liable for Defective Combat Earplugs That Allegedly Harmed Hearing of Two Marine Combat Veterans

Two Marine veterans are claiming the 3M company owes them for loss of hearing they have suffered due to defective earplugs manufactured by the 3M Company and sold to the U.S military for more than a decade. Last summer the U.S. Department of Justice and 3M reached a $9.1 million…

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Female Veterans Quietly Struggle With Sexual Harassment, Suicide

by Max Jungreis   Pfc. Nichole Bowen-Crawford said she was walking to lunch on her Army base near Nasiriyah, Iraq, in 2003 when she received her daily proposition from a passing fellow soldier. “Hey, Bowen,” the officer tossed out, “let’s go f— in the bunker.” Bowen-Crawford told VOA that while…

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Veterans Respond to Effort in Supreme Court to Remove War Memorial

by Troy Worden   When Jake Hill heard that an atheist activist group had sued to have a historic World War I memorial pulled down because some people were offended by the monument’s Christian symbolism, the Marine got angry. “Americans of all faith backgrounds should be outraged,” Hill, a lance…

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Mothers of Deceased Vets Fight to Keep Memorial to Their Sons in Supreme Court

by Jeremy Dys   They came from many walks of life, the 49 boys of Prince George’s County, Maryland. Several were laborers like George Washington Farmer and William Lee–one white, the other African-American. One, Ernest Pendleton Magruder, was a well-known surgeon. Another, Henry Lewis Hulbert, a Medal of Honor recipient…

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Letter to the Editor: Giving Thanks and Living Gratefully in Today’s Republic

Dear Tennessee Star, November is best known for three special dates: Thanksgiving, Veteran’s Day, and every other year, election day. This is one of those years in which we have all three and the interesting, little-understood, facet of this month is that all three of these days are connected. Thanksgiving…

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Letter to the Editor: Giving Thanks and Living Gratefully in Today’s Republic

Dear Tennessee Star, November is best known for three special dates: Thanksgiving, Veteran’s Day, and every other year, election day. This is one of those years in which we have all three and the interesting, little-understood, facet of this month is that all three of these days are connected. Thanksgiving…

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Vietnam Veteran: ‘Marsha’ Has Always Fought For Our Veterans

Marsha Blackburn

A Chattanooga veteran of the Vietnam War said, “No one has fought harder for our active duty military and our veterans than Marsha Blackburn. We need to elect her to the Senate because the issues with the VA are far from solved.” Terry Thomas wrote a column for the Times…

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Tennessee State Senate Unanimously Passes Bills to Rectify Unjust Taxes Levied on Disabled Veterans

The Tennessee State Senate unanimously passed Senate Bill 10 and Senate Bill 1675, both of which were sponsored by State Senator Mark Green (R-Clarksville). “I was honored to sponsor these two bills to help our veterans who have given sacrificially to serve our country. Senate Bill 10 and Senate Bill…

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Donald Trump Signs VA Accountability Act Into Law, Promises Better Care for Veterans

President Trump signed a law Friday that makes it easier for the Department of Veterans Affairs to fire employees for wrongdoing and adds protections for whistleblowers in the VA. Responding to an Obama-era scandal in which veterans died waiting for doctor’s appointments, Mr. Trump said the Department of Veterans Affairs…

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Commentary: Remember Memorial Day

Our society survives by the service and martyrdom of these selfless souls. Tennessee, the Volunteer State, of all the states, should be the first to honor America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good. Happy Memorial Day 2017!

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