August 4th, 2008
06:50 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama, Bayh send letter to Pentagon on traumatic brain injuries

Obama met with Gen. Petraeus while visiting Iraq last month.
Obama met with Gen. Petraeus while visiting Iraq last month.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – As speculation over the number two slot rises, presidential candidate Barack Obama and potential v.p. contender Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana joined forces Monday, signing a letter with eight other senators that urges Defense Secretary Robert Gates to increase medical coverage and care for Iraq war veterans left with serious brain injuries.

Watch: Obama pledges help for veterans

The senators point to a recent study from the RAND Corporation that estimates 320,000 troops from the two Iraq wars experienced a traumatic brain injury, or TBI.

Earlier: Obama camp launches military families working group

"We are concerned that at a time when TBI is recognized as the signature wound of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan," the senators write, "one of the most widely accepted and critical rehabilitative treatments for this injury… cognitive rehabilitation therapy, is excluded by the military's … health insurance program."
The other senators signing on to the letter include political notables Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York, Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass, Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass and Sen. Joe Lieberman, D-CT. Obama and Bayh's name are clearly perched at the top.

soundoff (346 Responses)
  1. Chris from NY

    I hope Obama picks Mr. Bayh. He is such an inteligent and samrt person. I heard him defend Obama's position once on MSNBC. It seem like he was the one running on those ideas. He was good that day aas I am sure he will be if picked as the V.P.

    With that said a friend of mine just told me this morning that his son inlaw who served in Irag committed suicide this past weekened after an argument with the wife. This is after he used his wife's head to creat a hole on the wall eight days after giving birth. It's not only TBI that has infested these vets.It's also drug abuse and suicide. Let their health services include mental health services as a whole.

    August 4, 2008 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  2. rich, mo

    OBAMA/BAYH 08!

    August 4, 2008 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  3. Super delegate NJ

    Obambi is busy doing damage control. People call him smart but I doubt he is. We have already made up our mind on this "Citizen Of The World"

    August 4, 2008 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  4. Marc

    I guess McCain was too busy trying out his new pressure guage to worry about this.

    August 4, 2008 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  5. BROOKLYN

    Why did Senator Obama not do all of these nice things before running for office? Curious...

    It is obvious that if he wins we will spend four years listening to speeches diverting us from all of the mistakes... The USA is NOT a political training camp...

    August 4, 2008 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  6. Grog in Ohio

    I see someone else has already noticed that while McCain is spending his time, money and efforts mocking Obama, Obama is working to actually make some corrections to 7.5+ years of conservative failures. Apparently Mr. McCain has no plans to work on issues, only criticize those that do.

    169 days till the end of the Bush administration.

    August 4, 2008 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  7. CW4Barack

    While Sen. Obama is being serious and trying to find solutions to help Americans.....Sen. McCain is playing games and offering people contest gimmicks, tire guage and Britney and Paris. He should be the one making these kinds of proposals....after all isn't he the so call "war hero" and the most "experienced" one running for President.....hmmm!

    Go Obama, you will get my vote in November! Happy birthday Mr. Future President!

    August 4, 2008 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  8. lihansen

    This is already in place. It was a priority with the Bush Administration.

    If Senator Obama ever showed up to vote anything but "present", he'd know that.

    August 4, 2008 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  9. Big Bill from Brooklyn

    I personally hate to see the military service of our fine young citizens being politicized in this manner by those seeking the highest office in this land. Honor and support our troops. Period.

    August 4, 2008 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  10. Ismael

    It's becoming more and more obvious why so many Vets groups support Obama.

    What is McCain doing, other than what he calls "straight talk" and mocking Obama?

    August 4, 2008 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  11. Eric

    Obama, McCain will mock that and will say you don't really care about the troops. The same McCain who was against the GI education bill and then tried to get the merit for it.

    August 4, 2008 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  12. ChrisD

    Obama has a brain injury because he keeps forgeting what his stances are.

    August 4, 2008 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  13. red33,cedar rapids, ia

    It is obvious to me that Obama keeps throwing ' popular' ideas out there every time you turn around. Don't try to infer that McCain would not be good to our troops; that is ridiculous.
    Also, if you value a good education for your children, you should vote for McCain because of the voucher system. The 'dumbing down' of our school system to make teachers look good (when SOME aren't) is totally unfair to all, especially those who cannot afford private schools.
    Notice in the above sentence, I said 'some', as I know there are many good teachers.

    August 4, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  14. R.I.F.

    I thought Obama didn't support the troops? Not. McShame attacks, Obama lays out plans. Clear choice here folks.

    Obama '08

    August 4, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  15. Cindy

    So is McCain going to mock this one with a roll of bandages for a $25 donation?

    August 4, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  16. paul amador

    Joe Lieberman is not a Democrat.

    August 4, 2008 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  17. Ike (Atlanta, GA)

    Rich, Give McCain a break you know he can only do one thing at a time. LOL

    OBAMA 08 &12

    August 4, 2008 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  18. southerner

    Clearly, the best way to care for people with serious brain injuries is to make them Democratic senators.

    August 4, 2008 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  19. McNasty

    Why didn't McCain sign it as well?

    August 4, 2008 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  20. Becky Ellis

    Lieberman is not a Democrat

    August 4, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  21. Chris

    McCain needs to say why he pretends to support the troops, but was opposed to the GI Bill! Actions speak louder than words, my friend!

    Obama's actions have consistently supported our men and women in uniform. This letter makes a great point, we need to get them the medical care they need when they get home!

    August 4, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  22. Adam

    Joe Lieberman isn't a Democrat.

    August 4, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  23. EMJ

    Can't wait to see McCain's negative response/attack. Probably something about THE SURGE!

    August 4, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  24. Phantom of the Oprah

    Who is still listening to this media myth created by Oprah?

    August 4, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  25. Jon

    So Sen Obama believes letting a few million barrels of oil from our strategic reserve is needed for gas price relief, yet he won't let us drill off shore. Which option offers more hope of providing true long term relief and which seems like a political play for votes??????? Sen Obama is short sighted, and guided is more guided by his advisors than President Bush is guided by the VP. Where's the change? I thought the Dems didn't want that anymore?

    August 4, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
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