Mobile Menu - OpenMobile Menu - Closed


Veterans & Military Retirees

Our veterans, who have served during war and peace, have made tremendous sacrifices to protect our freedoms. They are defenders of democracy, who served to ensure all Americans can continue to enjoy freedom and peace.

I remain committed to holding the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) accountable and ensuring promises made to our veterans are kept. Our service members must have access to safe housing, good jobs and the healthcare they need when they come home.

There are still too many instances of our veterans not receiving the care and service they have earned and the VA system not meeting their needs. Veterans deserve to receive their benefits in a timely and consistent manner; clearing ongoing backlogs will help us reach this goal.  I have supported reforms in Congress to modernize appeals processes, bring accountability to the Department of Veterans Affairs and give student veterans the largest expansion of GI Bill benefits since the GI Bill was created.

Ongoing proposals to raise TRICARE deductibles, premiums and co-pays for beneficiaries remain a principle concern for military service members, retirees and their families. I fully understand that TRICARE is an earned benefit, and I am opposed to a “tiered” enrollment fee structure or “means-testing” for service members, retirees and their families. I understand that the unique military retirement and healthcare package is the primary incentive for top-quality people to endure the extraordinary demands and sacrifices inherent in a military career spanning 20 or 30 years.

I will continue to work with my colleagues to preserve pay, benefits and incentives for the military, retirees and veterans and at the same time address unsustainable government spending.


More on Veterans & Military Retirees

June 5, 2014 Press Release
Washington, DC – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after it was discovered that Fort Sill Military Base in Lawton is expected to begin housing at least 600 unaccompanied minors who illegally immigrated to the United States. Since fiscal year 2011, the number of these individuals, usually from Central America, has grown from 6,000 to 66,000 last year. By next year, this number is expected to climb even higher to 127,000.
May 27, 2014 News Stories

NewsOK - Chris Casteel

President Barack Obama announced Tuesday that the United States would keep nearly 10,000 troops in Afghanistan through 2016.

November 11, 2013 Weekly Columns

We are a blessed nation indeed. Throughout our more than 237-year history, countless men and women have selflessly answered the call to protect our freedom and preserve liberty by serving in the military. On Veterans Day, we remember these individuals, their bravery and sacrifice. As we commemorate those who have come before to secure and preserve independence, honor those currently serving to keep us safe and as we support military families in our neighborhoods, join me in showing your appreciation.   

June 27, 2013 Press Release
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement in response to Tuesday’s announcement made by the United States Army. The announcement declared changes to the Army’s force structure that will impact numerous Army bases across the country, including Fort Sill in Lawton.
June 3, 2013 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), Congressmen Frank Lucas (R-Okla.-3), Tom Cole (R-Okla.-4), James Lankford (R-Okla.-5), Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.-1) and Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.-2) today praised the decision from the Air Force to invoke Alternate Safe Haven Authorities which would except Tinker Air Force Base civilian personnel from furloughs whose homes were destroyed or declared uninhabitable as a result of the recent tornadoes in Oklahoma.

May 15, 2013 News Stories

McAlester News-Capital - James Beaty

Members of the McAlester Defense Support Association, along with other community representatives, are back in the McAlester following their trip to the nation’s Capitol last week.

 MDSA members who helped organize the trip said their purpose is to show community support for the McAlester Army Ammunition Plant and the rest of the defense industry in the McAlester area,

May 10, 2013 News Stories

The Oklahoman - Chris Casteel

Expressing dismay with a growing problem of sexual assault in the military, Rep. Tom Cole told the top two officials in the U.S. Air Force on Thursday that somebody might have to get “kicked out.”

“If there have to be some examples made, they just need to get made because it's just not tolerable to be in this situation,” Cole, R-Moore, said at a House subcommittee hearing on the Air Force budget.

May 8, 2013 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) mourned the loss of Lawton-native First Lieutenant Brandon J. Landrum who died last Saturday while supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. Landrum was one of five soldiers killed by a roadside bomb in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan. He was assigned Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 36th Infantry Regiment, 1st Armored Division, Fort Bliss, Texas. Landrum is survived by his parents, wife and children.

October 23, 2012 Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.  – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after the ceremony to name the Ardmore Post Office in honor of Specialist Micheal E. Phillips, who was killed in action on February 24, 2008, in Shulla, Iraq.  Specialist Phillips was awarded a Bronze Star and recognized as "Distinguished Member of the 502nd Infantry Regiment."