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RALEIGH, NC — Cal Cunningham, a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, has called out Senator Thom Tillis’ failure to stand up for North Carolina military families and Tillis’ weakness on key national security issues that put U.S. security at risk, saying he’s put “partisan political interest ahead of the national interest.”
That’s why unlike Senator Tillis, Cal will put the Senate seat to work for North Carolina servicemembers by making sure they have the resources they need, and fighting to protect and expand support for military families.
Ahead of Veterans Day on Monday, here are five ways Senator Thom Tillis has hurt North Carolina’s military families during his time in the Senate.
ONE: Senator Tillis sided with the White House THREE times to take $80 million from North Carolina military projects.
Tillis voted last month for the THIRD time to back President Trump’s sham national emergency at the expense of North Carolinians, allowing the White House to raid $80 million from North Carolina military projects to fund a border wall.
Tillis, who is embattled in a tough primary challenge that has left him and his opponent trying to outdo the other’s conservative credentials, previously announced opposition to the White House’s emergency declaration, but ultimately voted three times to allow the $80 million in cuts in what the Fayetteville Observer called an “Olympic gold flip-flop.”
Tillis’ cave has drawn criticism from editorial boards and military families alike, with one military spouse at Fort Bragg, which has faced funding issues, asking, “How can we trust you to fix it if you’re taking money from us actively for a border wall?”
Cal Cunningham spoke out against the epic failure to protect North Carolina military families in a digital ad released in September.
TWO: Senator Tillis blocked a bill that would have helped wounded veterans access fertility treatments, forcing wounded veterans to continue paying out-of-pocket for IVF.
Tillis blocked a bill that would have allowed the Department of Veterans Affairs to pay for wounded veterans’ fertility treatments by adding a hyper-partisan poison pill to the legislation that would block the VA from working with Planned Parenthood to provide fertility services.
The Paralyzed Veterans of America blasted Tillis’ actions as “histrionic political grandstanding.”
THREE: Senator Tillis backed the GOP tax bill, even though it hiked taxes on Gold Star Families.
Tillis supported the tax bill despite the fact that it actually hiked taxes on military families, forcing some to pay thousands of dollars in taxes on survivor benefits.
Congress has failed to fix the law to protect Gold Star families from massive tax hikes.
FOUR: Senator Tillis accepted $17,000 from for-profit colleges that preyed on North Carolina servicemembers, and backed a bill to deregulate the industry.
Tillis has accepted $17,000 from Bridgepoint Education PAC — a political action committee associated with for-profit college Bridgepoint Education — and supported legislation to deregulate the for-profit college industry.
Bridgepoint’s Ashford University had targeted wounded Marines at Camp Lejeune, including one with traumatic brain injury. Bridgepoint was even under investigation by North Carolina for its unlawful student loan practices.
FIVE: Senator Tillis accepted more than $14,000 from the payday lending industry in his Senate career, while opposing pro-consumer measures that would protect servicemembers and veterans’ from predatory practices.
Tillis opposed pro-consumer measures that would have protected servicemembers from predatory loan practices, despite the support of the American Legion and the North Carolina Veterans Council.
Tillis voted to eliminate North Carolinians’ right to seek financial relief through the justice system after a financial institution breaks the law, which especially impacts servicemembers and their families who are often the target of predatory practices.
Tillis has taken more than $14,000 from payday lenders during his Senate career.
Watch Cal hold Tillis accountable for his failure to put our national security ahead of his political security HERE:
Read more from North Carolina press about Tillis’ failure to stand up for military families:
Raleigh News and Observer/Charlotte Observer: Editorial: Thom Tillis’ terrible, no good and totally predictable bad day
Greensboro News and Record: Editorial: Robbing Peter to pay for a wall
Fayetteville Observer: Our View: Tillis did not stand up to Trump for state’s military funding
Raleigh News and Observer: Tillis votes again with Trump on border emergency declaration, despite NC military cuts