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It May be the “Best You Can Get”: Wicker and Cochran May Have Door to Vote for Budget Deal

WASHINGTON, D.C.–The budget deal that passed overwhelmingly in the U.S. House with the support of Mississippi’s Republican representatives, but with a no vote by Democrat Rep. Bennie Thompson, was expected to come up for a vote in the full Senate Tuesday. Sen. Roger Wicker introduced an amendment that may allow him to reverse his position against the deal.

Wicker said last week that he could not support the deal because it robbed veterans and active military of retirement benefits.

“This is not a matter of nickels and dimes for our retired and active-duty troops. It is unfair to ask the men and women who wear the uniform of the United States to shoulder the full weight of these cuts” he said Monday.

The Ryan-Murray budget deal automatically subtracts a full percentage point from annual cost-of-living increases said a Wicker press release. The Military Officers Association of America issued a report showing that military personnel “who serve a 20 year career would lose nearly 20 percent of their retired pay. An E-7 retiring at age 40 today would experience a loss of $83,000 in purchasing power – an O-5 would lose $124,000.

“It is not too late for Congress to keep its promises to our military personnel. I urge my colleagues to join us in passing this amendment without delay.”

The amendment is cosponsored by Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., and Thad Cochran, R-Miss.

Wicker suggests making up for the money by “scouring” the federal budget for the $6 billion.

The two-year budget deal, if passed, would keep another government shutdown from happening. If a deal is not passed that could happen in January.

Other conservatives have said they will vote for the deal because, right now with a Democrat controlled Senate, it may be the best deal that Republicans will get.

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