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President Barack Obama coming to Charlotte Tuesday

U.S. IRAQ 2
DOUG MILLS - NYT

Three weeks after signing into law a major overhaul of the Department of Veterans Affairs, President Barack Obama will come to Charlotte Tuesday to speak to the American Legion.

The president is expected to speak in the morning, though no details have been announced. The 2.4 million member organization began its convention Friday.

National Commander Daniel Dellinger said the legion “is honored that the nation’s commander-in-chief will address those … who have served in uniform.”

But Obama is expected to meet skeptics – including at least one in his own party.

“The Obama Administration has not yet done enough to earn the lasting trust of our veterans and implement real and permanent reforms at the VA,” Democratic U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan said in a statement. “I hope to hear the President address these challenges.”

Hagan is in a tight race with Republican Thom Tillis. Republicans have tried to tie Hagan to Obama, whose approval rating was 41 percent in one recent survey.

Obama signed the VA measure after months of turmoil at the agency. Embattled Secretary Eric Shinseki resigned in May. This month Congress confirmed a new secretary, Robert McDonald.

“We wish it hadn’t taken as long as it did to really start making some progress with problems at the VA,” said Dave Rehbein, a past national commander. “Now … we’re looking forward to hearing from the president about what the plans are to fix some of the long-standing problems.”

Morrill: 704-358-5059
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