Rep. Mike Levin
Rep. Mike Levin speaks at a veterans event in May. Courtesy of his office

This column is an excerpt from Rep. Levin’s speech on the House floor on Thursday.

House Republicans are holding our economy hostage and planning to slash billions of dollars from veterans’ services and benefits in return for maintaining the full faith and credit of the United States.

Republicans are delivering a one-two punch to veterans.

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First, their debt legislation would slash $30 billion dollars from veterans’ services, eliminate housing vouchers for 50,000 homeless veterans, and cut 81,000 jobs from the Veterans Health Administration.

They can say whatever they want but this is what they voted for.

Second, the Republicans just released a bill to gut the health care funding we promised to toxic-exposed veterans in the Pact Act.

How about instead of cuts to veterans’ services and benefits, we reduce our deficit by ending tax loopholes for the ultrawealthy and by ensuring the largest corporations pay their fair share.

House Democrats are united in opposition to Republicans’ veterans funding cuts, and we will not go back on the progress we’ve made.

So as we all head into this Memorial Day weekend, we must do better.

We must not default on our debts. And let’s keep our promises to our veterans.

Mike Levin represents the 49th District in north coastal San Diego and south Orange counties.