Sunday, June 5, 2011
John McCain - Chairman of SASC
The Rogers/LoBiondo Amendment to the Defense Authorization Bill calls for the repatriation of the remains of American servicemen from Libya, specifically the men of the USS Intrepid from Martyr's Square in Tripoli. This bill is now being considered by the Senate Armed Services Committee(SASC), whose chairman is Sen. John McCain.
Now YOU can do something to help repatriate the remains of American Naval Heroes from Tripoli by helping to convince Sen. McCain, his committee and the 100 members of the U.S. Senate to keep the Rogers/LoBiondo Amendment as part of the Defense Authorization Bill.
Rep. Mike Rogers (R. Mich.) is the champion of the Tripoli Repatriation Act - having introduced the resolution in the House of Representatives which requires the Secretary of Defense to do whatever is necessary to return the remains of American servicemen in Libya.
While we expected it to take many months to get the necessary co-sponsors and support, Rogers is the highly respected chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, and only someone with that authority and respect can do what he did - attach the resolution to the Defense Authorization Act. He then pitched the House Rules Committee to keep it there, which they did. So it passed the House when they approved the Defense Authorization Act, which is now being reviewed by the Senate.
Just as the House Rules Committee eliminated many of the 200 some amendments that were attached to the Defense bill, the Senate Armed Services Committee will do the same, and go over the bill with a fine tooth comb and eliminate what they want out and keep what they want in, and then let it be voted on by the full Senate. They will do this before they adjourn for the July 4th holiday, probably before Friday, June 17th, less than two weeks away.
Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R.NJ), who has represented Somers Point, NJ for many years, and has been our biggest supporter in Congress, asked Rep. Rogers to take up this cause, and so the amendment is being referred to as the Rogers/LoBondo Amendment.
What we need to do is to get the same support in the Senate that we got in the House from LoBiondo and Rogers, and to do this we need a very strong letter writing campaign asking for their support. Letters from Somers and Wadsworth family members carry more weight, as do letters from constituents, so if you write your Senator asking him to support Rogers/LoBiondo Amendment to repatriate the remains of our servicemen from Tripoli, it will get their attention.
Letters should be faxed to DC and mailed to the Home State Office - because snail mail sent to DC is withheld for a week or two while it is checked for anthrax, and that will be too late. Fax and phone calls are best, and emails and comments sent via Senator's web pages will help too.
Letters to the Department of Defense will be helpful, especially to Gen. Martin Dempsey, the new Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Sen. Harry Reid, Majority Leader in the senate, and Sen. Mitch McConnell, Minority Leader in the Senate.
The most important Senators are the members of the Senate Armed Services Committee - Room SR-228, Russell Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510-6050 (202-224-3871), whose chairman and ranking member is John McCain (R.Az) and Carl Levin (D. Michigan).
Their Fax Number is (202) 228-0036
Other members of this committee are:
Joseph I. Lieberman (Connecticut)
Jack Reed (Rhode Island)
Daniel K. Akaka (Hawaii)
Ben Nelson (Nebraska)
Jim Webb (Virginia)
Claire McCaskill (Missouri)
Mark Udall (Colorado)
Kay R. Hagan (North Carolina)
Mark Begich (Alaska)
Joe Manchin III (West Virginia)
Jeanne Shaheen (New Hampshire)
Kirsten E. Gillibrand (New York)
Richard Blumenthal (Connecticut)
James M. Inhofe (Oklahoma)
Jeff Sessions (Alabama)
Saxby Chambliss (Georgia)
Roger F. Wicker (Mississippi)
Scott P. Brown (Massachusetts)
Rob Portman (Ohio)
Kelly Ayotte (New Hampshire)
Susan M. Collins (Maine)
Lindsey Graham (South Carolina)
John Cornyn (Texas)
David Vitter (Louisiana)
Other important Senators include
Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D. NJ)
Sen. Robert Menendez (D.NJ)
Sen. Olympia Snowe (Maine)
Please write, Fax and phone these Senators and tell them that you think 200 years is too long for the remains of American Naval heroes to be left behind enemy lines and in the hands of pirates, and to bring them home.
Short, one page letters are enough, and get right to the point, inform them of the situation, and ask them to help remedy this injustice.