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Op-ed: Banks Service to Veterans, Military Unmatched

Congressman Jim Banks (America First Rally) Photo Credit: Jessica Stauffer

Op-Ed: Banks Service to Veterans, Military Unmatched

By: Dick Lineberry

Before he was elected to represent Indiana’s third district in Congress, Congressman Banks deployed to Afghanistan while he was in the State Senate. As a fellow veteran, his time in uniform overseas was one of the reasons I first voted for him in 2016, and I’m glad that I did. We have never had a congressman so focused on caring for our veterans and Jim Banks has left big shoes to fill for whoever takes his place.

Northeast Indiana has had many good representatives in Congress, but I believe Jim Banks has delivered on his commitment to prioritize our service members, veterans, and national security more than anyone before him.

Nearly every bill written by Jim Banks that later became law has helped our veterans, strengthened our military, or done both.

Just last year the House passed Banks’ bill that closed a loophole within the GI bill program, ensuring our troops get the full benefits they have earned.

In the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act, Rep. Banks secured a provision that allowed active-duty service members to participate in job training programs to aid their transition to civilian life and to boost morale, recruitment and retention in our ranks.

During his time on the Veterans Affairs Committee, Banks served as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Technology Modernization and worked across the aisle to help our veterans get the care they need. In 2020, he introduced the Veterans Access to Online Treatment Act with a Democrat from Maine. This legislation would create a new pilot program to establish mental health telemedicine services for veterans in rural areas.

Banks worked closely with groups like the Shepherd’s House to get homeless Hoosier veterans back on their feet. When the faith-based shelter faced a funding shortage, Banks fought tirelessly for our community and we won’t forget it.

Most recently as Chairman of the Military Personnel Subcommittee, Banks secured the largest pay raise for our troops in decades in the 2024 National Defense Authorization Act.

On behalf of the tens of thousands of servicemembers and veterans in our community, I want to thank Congressman Banks for his service in the Navy and in Congress. It is my hope that when voters go to the polls they will elect a representative that is focused on serving veterans and service members in Northeast Indiana.

Dick Lineberry served as the Indiana Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) State Commander from 2021-2022 and is the current New Haven VFW Post Commander and 4th District Commander. Dick is an Air National Guard/Air Force Reserves veteran with over 30 years of service, including several deployments overseas. After 24 years with the New Haven Police Department, Dick served as police officer at the Fort Wayne Veterans Affairs Hospital where he later assisted fellow veterans enroll for VA benefits.

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