Dear VoteVets.org Supporter,
Last year, with your help, VoteVets made history. Because of your support, four candidates who served during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were elected to Congress with high hopes, and they have not disappointed. Congressmen Patrick Murphy, Joe Sestak, Tim Walz, and Chris Carney have become strong leaders in the House of Representatives, and are giving a heavy dose of reality about what is, and what is not, supporting the troops.
Now, it's time to add to their ranks. Today, VoteVets.org PAC is announcing our endorsement of two more veterans who are running for Congress - John Boccieri and Jonathan Powers. To ensure that their campaigns begin as strongly as possible, they need your help.
Donate to Boccieri for Congress here | Donate to Powers for Congress here
Both of these 21st Century Patriots promise to bring more strength of leadership to a place where it is sorely lacking - Capitol Hill.
John Boccieri, is in his first term as a member of the Ohio State Senate. Boccieri served our country by enlisting in the U.S. Air Force. He is an Air Force Reserve Major and aircraft commander aboard the C-130 aircraft, and was stationed at Youngstown Joint Air Reserve Station. He recently deployed in 4 rotations to support our troops in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. Boccieri has served our nation in over 40 countries and has eleven years of service in the U.S. Military.
Previously, in his role as staff officer, he supported Presidential visits to Arkansas and also worked on base-wide support of three treaties- Open Skies, Chemical Weapons Compliance, and START II Treaties. As a commissioned Lieutenant in the military, he worked with base-wide support for the Department of Defense, Department of the Air Force, the State Department, the White House Communications Staff, the Secret Service, and Air Force and Marine Advance Agents.
John has a tremendous opportunity to take this district. Republican Congressman Ralph Regula, an 18-term incumbent, was only able to get 58 percent of the vote last election, so this is a very winnable district for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans!
Jonathan Powers has long been one of VoteVets.org's go-to guys, and has represented us in press conferences and media many times. We're very excited to see him throw his hat into his home district around Buffalo, NY. An Army Captain and decorated Iraq War veteran, schoolteacher and non-profit leader, Jon sets an exceptional standard for "leadership by example" some in Washington, DC would be wise to follow.
As an artillery platoon leader in the Army's 1st Armored Division, and later as the Battalion Commander's Adjutant in Baghdad and Najaf - Jon Powers was hailed by his commanding officer, Lieutenant Colonel William Rabena, as "one of the most talented officers I have known in twenty-two years of service in the Army." Rabena lauded his "extraordinary management skills, leadership, and unmatched talent to accomplish the most difficult tasks with minimal guidance," calling Powers "the type of officer a commander only dreams of having in his unit."
The war was far from over when Jon returned home to Western New York, intending to become a full-time social studies teacher in the public schools. But, moved by his experience at war and driven to action, Jon sought to help those in Iraq whose voices are least heard - Iraqi children, many of whom have known only war their entire young lives. Jon returned to Baghdad and founded War Kids Relief, a nonprofit organization aimed at assisting the youth of Iraq, providing them the resources and education needed to avoid recruitment by radical and terrorist organizations. War Kids Relief was quickly recognized for its path-breaking work and was featured on the NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams "Making a Difference" series and in a Newsweek cover story.
Jon's opponent, Congressman Tom Reynolds, too often places loyalty - to his political party and the preservation of his own career - ahead of competence and accountability. In 2006, in a historically Republican district, Reynolds won by a mere 5,000 votes. Again, this is a district ready to be represented by a true leader, like Jonathan Powers!
Please do your part to help out these fine veterans lend support to the strong voices we've already sent to Congress. As you know, in today's politics, money talks. So, let's get these guys off to a huge start and show that America want the Voice of America's 21st Century Patriot in Congress!
Iraq War Veteran
Chairman, VoteVets.org Political Action Committee