MIAMI (CBSMiami) — Florida’s governor met with President Donald Trump to sign a bill allowing veterans to get medical help from private providers if they can’t get it at the VA or if they live too far from a VA facility.
Wednesday morning, Governor Rick Scott joined the president for a bill signing of the Veterans Choice Program Extension and Improvement Act at the White House.
“My father served in WWII and I proudly served in the United States Navy, and I appreciate President Trump’s commitment to our military and our veterans,” said Governor Scott.
The program was first established in response to the VA crisis in 2014 but was set to expire this year. Lawmakers voted unanimously in the Senate to extend it.
“We’re all united by a very common mission. We will protect those who protect us. I’ve been saying that a lot over the last two years at rallies and speeches. We will protect those who protect us,” said Trump.
The Executive Director of the Florida Department of Veterans Affairs and Retired Army Lt. Col. Glenn Sutphin also joined in the event.
Before the signing, he held a closed-door meeting with VA Secretary David Shulkin.
While President Trump focused on past service members, Vice President Mike Pence talked with sailors and marines aboard the USS Ronald Reagan in Japan.
“President Trump will unfailingly support the brave men and women in uniform who defend our freedom every single day,” said Pence.
Vice President Pence called North Korea the most dangerous threat to peace and security in the region.
“We will defeat any attack and meet any use of conventional or nuclear weapons with an overwhelming and effective American response,” said Pence.
North Korean state TV showed video of a mock missile attack on the United States during a musical performance celebrating the birthday of North Korea’s founder.
Last week, the Trump administration announced it was moving another carrier group – the USS Carl Vinson to the Korean Peninsula but that ship has not yet left.
“She will be on her way and I’ll determine when she gets there and where she actually operates,” said Secretary of Defense James Mattis.
The White House also says it will conduct a 90 day review of the nuclear deal with Iran. The U.S. is considering more sanctions against Iran despite acknowledging that Tehran has complied with the agreement.
“An unchecked Iran has the potential to travel the same path as North Korea and take the world along with it,” said Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
The president is hoping to broker peace in the Middle East when Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas comes to the White House.
“They will use the visit to reaffirm the commitment of both the United States and the Palestinian leadership to pursuing and ultimately concluding, a conflict ending settlement between the Palestinians and Israel,” said White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer.
Every president in the last half-century has tried and failed to broker a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians.
[graphiq id=”cOImxQg1Bb” title=”Florida Veteran Population by Period of Service” width=”600″ height=”543″ url=”https://sw.graphiq.com/w/cOImxQg1Bb” frozen=”true”]