Clinton/Gore '96





7/31/96
PRESS RELEASE

CLINTON/GORE '96 APPOINTS NEW ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC LIASON FOR VETERANS OUTREACH

The Clinton/Gore '96 campaign has appointed Thomas S. Keefe, a former U.S. Army military policeman, as the Director of Veterans Outreach. Mr. Keefe will act as a liaison for Veterans; formulate and execute plans to reach the nation's 26 million veterans; coordinate Clinton/Gore '96 campaign events for Veterans; and will be instrumental in the operation of the national Clinton/Gore '96 Veterans steering committee to be named in August.

Mr. Keefe served with the 199th Light Infantry Brigade in Vietnam from May 1969 to March 1970. He comes to the Clinton/Gore '96 campaign from the U.S. Department of Labor where he served as a special advisor to the Assistant Secretary of Veterans Employment and Training.

"The Clinton Administration has amassed an impressive and far-reaching record in serving veterans and their families, and Tom's experience with and dedication to Veterans will be a tremendous asset to the campaign," said Alan Wheat, Deputy Campaign Manager and Director of Public Liaison.

Under President Clinton's leadership, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and other governmental departments made great strides in addressing the needs of veterans. Each of President Clinton's annual budgets has contained significant increases for the VA. For the 1997 fiscal year, the President proposed a $1.3 billion increase for the VA above the amount Congress appropriated for fiscal year 1996, more than half of which would be directed toward veterans' health care and other discretionary programs. In addition, the VA and other agencies increasingly addressed the needs of the Persian Gulf War veterans who have undiagnosed illnesses.

The Clinton Administration has also expanded services for women and minority veterans; initiated new treatment programs for veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD); broadened presumptive benefits for veterans exposed to Agent Orange and radiation; and increased assistance to homeless veterans.

President Clinton has demonstrated his dedication to Veterans by sending to Congress legislation that would simplify complex and arcane eligibility rules and improve access to care at VA hospitals. As the President said in his speech to the Disabled American Veterans on July 28th, "We are committed to keeping the VA health care system strong into the 21st century, and we know that requires us to carry out a dramatic restructuring that will improve the quality of care and make our hospitals more patient-centered and less bureaucratic" The VA has undertaken a comprehensive reorganization of its health care system to become more efficient and be more responsive to the needs of its patients.

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Paid for by Clinton/Gore ’96 General Committee, Inc.