President Joe Biden signed nine healthcare bills focused on veterans into law at the White House on Tuesday, just one day after the 78th anniversary of the Allied invasion of Normandy during World War II.
The raft of laws is specifically aimed at expanding care for veterans who were exposed to toxic burn pits. Burn pit exposure is believed to have led to the advanced brain cancer that killed the president’s late son, Beau, in 2015.
Biden remarked at Tuesday’s signing ceremony that the country has a “sacred obligation” to support “those we send into harm’s way and to care for them and their families when they return home.”
“Veterans are the backbone, the spine of who we are as a country. Less than 1% of the population risk everything to defend our nation and our values and everything we hold dear, and you know, the 99% of us who don’t, we owe them. We owe them big,” he continued. “And that’s what today is all about — is paying a debt in my view.”
The nine bills Biden signed Tuesday include:
- United States Army Rangers Veterans of World War II Congressional Gold Medal Act.
- A bill designating the Daniel Kahikina Akaka Department of Veterans Affairs Community-Based Outpatient Clinic.
- A bill designating the Col. Gail S. Halvorsen “Candy Bomber” Veterans Center.
- VA Facility Name Transfer Act.
- Strengthening Oversight for Veterans Act of 2021.
- Veterans Rapid Retraining Assistance Program Restoration and Recovery Act of 2022.
- Radiation Exposure Compensation Extension Act of 2022.
- Making Advances in Mammography and Medical Options for Veterans Act.
- Dr. Kate Hendricks Thomas Supporting Expanded Review for Veterans in Combat Environments Act.
“This is something we Bidens take personally. Every veteran and family member of a veteran who serves has made our lives, our liberty, and our very nation possible,” the president concluded. “We owe you.”
You can watch Biden’s remarks in full below.