Sali skipped vote on funding for vets with traumatic brain injuries

Minnick for Congress

By John Foster - October 16, 2008

In May primary debate, Sali claims he was there; Congressional record shows he skipped vote

Thursday, October 16
For immediate release

On May 14, Rep. Bill Sali debated his primary challenger, Iraq war veteran Matt Salisbury. After a question about assistance for veterans, Sali spoke about the need to help those with traumatic brain injuries:

Sali: “There’s not an awful lot that’s known about traumatic brain injuries—or not nearly enough. We need to commit to understanding that and giving those guys and gals the help that they need to get through those kinds of issues.”

Salisbury interrupted the moderator before the next question, and the following exchange happened. (You can watch the video here. The exchange begins at 34:00):

Salisbury: “I wanted to just give you the chance right now. I noticed you had an absentee vote. Or, you weren’t present for the, uh, traumatic brain vote on, it was Orrin Hatch’s bill. You do have an outstanding record of voting, so I thought it’d be a good chance. I’ve been asked by vets and rather than put words in your mouth - I wasn’t sure if you were held up. I’m talking about the current bill for funding for the traumatic brain injury, that you were a no-show. So I was wondering: Was there an issue there, that you got held up?”

Sali: “I’m not aware that I did miss that vote. So, uh, we’ll check into that but I didn’t think ...”

Salisbury: “As I said, rather than speak for you I just throught it was a good chance for you to let us know.”

Sali:  “I believe I was there for that vote but we’ll check on it.”

In fact, Sali did skip the vote, according to the clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill passed 392-1, but Sali was a no-show, according to the roll call.

This bipartisan bill was co-sponsored by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-MA):

“The legislation will extend and improve funding for a range of traumatic brain injury rehabilitation programs, such as assistance in returning to work, finding a place to live, and obtaining needed support and appropriate rehabilitation services. It also funds an important CDC program to prevent such injuries. The bill will be of major assistance to soldiers with such injuries from combat, and to children, who tend to have a higher incidence of the injuries.”

“This is another example of Bill Sali blaiming others for his own mistakes and his ineffectiveness,” Minnick for Congress campaign spokesman John Foster said. “When Bill Sali had a chance to help veterans who need it most, he didn’t show up for work.”

For more information, call the number below.
________________
John M. Foster
Communications Director
Minnick for Congress
208.559.3547 (c)

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