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Topics: Veterans Affairs

Sens. Sherrod Brown and Lindsey Graham donate pay to vets groups during shutdown

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Congress,Senate,Veterans Affairs,Susan Crabtree,Lindsey Graham,Government Shutdown

Sens. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., are putting their money where their mouths are when it comes to supporting veterans during the government shutdown.

Brown lamented reports that vets visiting Washington were facing shuttered memorials and said he would donate his pay to an Ohio-based veterans group.

“WWII vets shouldn't face closed DC memorials,” Brown tweeted. “During #shutdown, I'll donate pay to OH-based Honor Flight Network.”

Graham soon followed his lead.

“I'm going to take my congressional salary during the government shutdown and donate it to the Wounded Warrior Project,” Graham announced on Twitter on Tuesday.

President Obama on Monday night signed a bill to ensure that military service members get paid during the government shutdown, but it's unclear how military veterans, including 3.3 million who are disabled, will be affected.

If the government shutdown stretches into late October, the Veterans Affairs Department may stop disability and pension checks for elderly and ill veterans.

On Tuesday, the federal government shuttered national parks and memorials, but that didn't stop a group of World War II veterans who planned to visit the National Mall on Tuesday to pay their respects.

The World War II memorial is closed to the public, but the group, led by the Mississippi Gulf Coast Honor Flight, a veterans nonprofit that sponsors one-day, free trips to Washington to visit the memorial, knocked down the barriers to get inside.

The Defense Department also has suspended all intercollegiate athletic events for military service academies because of the government shutdown, which could impact the college homecoming game between Navy and Air Force on Saturday, a major source of income for both institutions.

The Pentagon has already canceled a soccer game between the Naval Academy and Howard University scheduled for Tuesday.

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