Concerned Veterans for America

Concerned Veterans for America (CVA)

Background

Concerned Veterans for America (CVA) is an Arlington, Virginia, non-profit that bills itself as a veterans’ rights group. According to its website, Concerned Veterans for America’s mission is “to preserve the freedom & prosperity we & our families fought & sacrificed to defend.”1Concerned Veterans for America homepage. Archived June 6, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/OB6Mh

CVA was formed in 2011 as a non-profit group named Vets for Economic Freedom Trust with a reported $2 million in seed funding from Koch network donors. While it initially presented itself as a veterans advocacy group, it also focused on “top agenda items of the Koch network,” The Washington Post reported.2Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Lisa Rein, and David Weigel. “How a Koch-backed veterans group gained influence in Trump’s Washington,” The Washington Post, April 7, 2018. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/Az5QS

Conservative Transparency described CVA as unique from other veterans rights groups in that “CVA promotes proposals that are extremely conservative in nature and almost exclusively concerned with promoting smaller government, even when that conflicts with the expressed wishes of the veteran community.” CT adds: “Whether it is their plan to privatize the Department of Veterans Affairs or to move Military Retirement to a private 401(k)-type system, Concerned Veterans for America stands strongly opposed to policies for which virtually ever major veterans’ group fights.”3Concerned Veterans for America (Vets for Economic Freedom Trust),” Conservative Transparency. Accessed June 6, 2019.

In September 2016, the Koch network pulled Concerned Veterans for America, the Libre Initiative, and Generation Opportunity under the umbrella of Americans for Prosperity, the main political arm of the Kochs. CVA became a “branded” project. As noted by the Center for Media and Democracy’s PR Watch, this reorganization made pinpointing CVA and AFP‘s spending on election activities more difficult.4Matea Gold. “In major shift, Koch consolidates network of advocacy groups into Americans for Prosperity,” The Washington Post, September 16, 2016. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/ceCAn 5David Armiak. “Team Koch Steps Up Game with Veterans Astroturf Operation in 2018 Midterms,” PR Watch, November 2, 2018. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/8X9KF

“The leaders of the LIBRE Initiative, Concerned Veterans for America, and Generation Opportunity are all expected to remain in place, but will be running their organizations as branded projects under the AFP banner. For us, the way to be most effective, particularly this election cycle, heading into final weeks, and most importantly into 2017 and beyond, is with our grass-roots operation,” Mark Holden, chairman of the board of Freedom Partners, the network’s funding arm, said in an interview with the Washington Post. “What we’ve done in combining them under AFP is going to make us much stronger.”6Matea Gold. “In major shift, Koch consolidates network of advocacy groups into Americans for Prosperity,” The Washington Post, September 16, 2016. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/ceCAn

In 2018, The Washington Post described CVA as “one of the most muscular arms of the conservative Koch network” and noted it had spent at least $52 million on campaigns and policy work since it was founded. At that time, President Trump had recently echoed one of CVA‘s talking points regarding VA’s “Choice” program, which gives veterans access to private doctors. “We want them to have choice so that they can run to a private doctor and take care of it,” Trump said at a rally in Ohio.7Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Lisa Rein, and David Weigel. “How a Koch-backed veterans group gained influence in Trump’s Washington,” The Washington Post, April 7, 2018. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/Az5QS

Louis Celli, national director of veterans affairs and rehabilitation for the American Legion, describes CVA as a “political lobbying firm.” According to Celli, “They’re not a veterans organization. They’re using veterans issues as a tool to push a political agenda.”8Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Lisa Rein, and David Weigel. “How a Koch-backed veterans group gained influence in Trump’s Washington,” The Washington Post, April 7, 2018. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/Az5QS

A 2014 investigation by ProPublica found CVA trustee Wayne Gable “had deep ties to the Koch brothers, earlier serving as a managing director at Koch Industries.” The investigation also shed light onto several obscure LLCs operating as “disregarded entities” and feeding funds into Koch groups. CVA‘s wholly owned subsidiary LLC is a disregarded entity called TOHE, whose income at the time was reported at $1,968,500—a value that could be eventually traced back to grants from the Koch-controlled (and now defunct) TC4 Trust. OpenSecrets described TC4 as one of the two largest “shadow money mailboxes” feeding Koch network groups, many of which focused on election ads favoring GOP candidates.9Kin Barker and Theodoric Meyer. “Who Controls the Kochs’ Political Network? ASMI, SLAH and TOHE,” ProPublica, March 17, 2014. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/rpdbR

“Seat at the Table” in Trump Administration

The Washington Post reported in 2018 that several former leaders of CVA had secured key positions within the Trump administration. One example was Darin Selnick, who was a CVA advisor before joining the White House as veterans affairs adviser.Selnick, who later returned to a position at CVA, commented on his group’s influence in the administration:10(Press Release). “Darin Selnick Rejoins Concerned Veterans for America as Senior Advisor,” Concerned Veterans for America, May 8, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/wYnen

The bottom line is, the White House is going to work with organizations that support the White House. CVA has been very supportive of the White House, so they’re going to have a seat at the table,” Selnick told the Washington Post.11(Press Release). “Darin Selnick Rejoins Concerned Veterans for America as Senior Advisor,” Concerned Veterans for America, May 8, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/wYnen

WaPo noted that “Even though the Koch network pointedly refused to endorse Trump’s White House bid in 2016, his campaign ended up adopting major CVA policy priorities. One key ally of the group was former GOP congressman Jeff Miller of Florida, a Trump campaign adviser who served as chairman of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee.”12(Press Release). “Darin Selnick Rejoins Concerned Veterans for America as Senior Advisor,” Concerned Veterans for America, May 8, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/wYnen

According to ProPublica, at least four former staff members of CVA later gained positions in the Trump administration.13Concerned Veterans for America,” ProPublica ‘Trump Town’. Archived June 9, 2019

Concerned Veterans for America was originally organized under the name Vets For Economic Freedom Trust, a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization. CVA still files its tax forms under that name, doing business as Concerned Veterans for America. According to 990 forms, a separate 501(c)(3) group entitled Concerned Veterans for America, Inc. also existed, and changed its name to The Seminar Network, Inc. on January 9, 2017. The Koch-controlled Seminar Network underwent a rebranding in the summer of 2019, becoming a group entitled Stand Together.14James Hohmann. “The Daily 202: The Koch network is reorganizing under a new name and with new priorities,” The Washington Post, May 20, 2019. Archived May 25, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/f5gw4

The Concerned Veterans for America (CVA) website describes itself as a “a project of Americans for Prosperity.”  Founded by David Koch and Richard Fink in 2003, AFP has been accused of “using the guise of nonprofit status to work, behind a screen of anonymity, on behalf of the Kochs’ corporate and political interests.”15Terms of Use,” Concerned Veterans for America. Archived June 6, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/PO2Nw 16Jane Mayer. “Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right,” January 19, 2016.

In 2014, ProPublica reported at iPolitics that CVA was also connected to a LLC with “the inscrutable name of TOHE.” Between July 2011 and June 2012, TOHE was given $1,968,500 grant by the now-defunct TC4 Trust — a group that used to disperse money for the Koch network. According to 990 forms, TOHE was a disregarded entity listed in connection with CVA, or Vets for Economic Freedom Trust. “Disregarded entities cannot be searched by name because their tax returns are filed as part of their parent non-profit, which of course is exactly what you don’t know,” iPolitics noted, adding that it “made the money more difficult to follow.”17ProPublica. “Who controls the Koch brothers’ political network?iPolitics, March 18, 2014. Archived June 6, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/oz5xo

Concerned Veterans for America Action

Concerned Veterans for America Action (CVA Action) is a project of the Americans for Prosperity Action, a super-PAC run by Americans for Prosperity. According to its website, CVA Action’s design logo and service marks are also owned by AfP Action. The group exists worked to remove what it describes as “domestic barriers to prosperity” such as “unsustainable national debt, limitations on free expression, and a failing veterans health care system.”18ABOUT CVA ACTION,” CVA Action. Archived June 6, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/7ul1C

Concerned Veterans for America Political Spending

Vets for Economic Freedom Trust DBA Concerned Veterans for Ameria

Lobbying data is available for Vets for Economic Freedom Trust, doing business as Concerned Veterans for America. See FEC data here. According to OpenSecrets, Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce gave a $750,000 contribution to CVA in 2016.19Concerned Veterans for America,” OpenSecrets. Accessed June 6, 2019.

The following are listed in CVA‘s 24- and 48-hour independent expenditures reports via the Federal Election Commission:

Candidate NameTotal Expenditures (2016)
Joe Heck$350,907
Marco Rubio$338,164
Patrick Toomey$513,980
Grand Total$1,203,051

Americans for Prosperity Doing Business as CVA

As noted at SourceWatch and in source FEC filings, Americans for Prosperity (AFP), in addition to operating under its own name, also does business under the name Concerned Veterans for America, the Libre Initiative, and others.20FEC Form 5, Report of Independent Expenditures made and Contributions Received, by Americans for Prosperity dba Concerned Veterans for America, September 17, 2018. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.

Below is a sample of independent expenditure data, pulled from the aggregated FEC database, for election year 2018:

Spender & Candidate Name (S= Support, O=Oppose)Total (2018)
Americans for Prosperity Action, Inc. dba CVA Action$52,990
Tester, Jon (O)$17,946
HURD, WILL (S)$16,000
BUDD, THEODORE  (S)$9,073
HURD, WILLIAM  (S)$6,966
MCMORRIS RODGERS, CATHY  (S)$3,005
Americans for Prosperity dba Concerned Veterans For America$1,792,197
Baldwin, Tammy (O)$1,783,871
Nelson, Bill (O)$5,802
HURD, WILL (S)$2,524
Grand Total$1,845,187

PR Watch noted the $1.8 million recorded was far less than CVA‘s spending in previous election cycles, and that value also didn’t stack up to what their executive director estimated they would spend as of January.21David Armiak. “Team Koch Steps Up Game with Veterans Astroturf Operation in 2018 Midterms,PR Watch, November 2, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URL:https://archive.fo/8X9KF 22David M. Drucker. “Koch veterans group could spend millions against Democrats in midterm,” Washington Examiner, January 28, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/uNpfQ

Stance on Climate Change

May 12, 2016

CVA signed an open letter supporting an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act which would prevent defense funds from going towards projects aimed at reducing climate change. In his statement ,CVA Vice President Dan Caldwell called climate change prevention policies a “waste of public dollars”:23Emilye Bell. “CONCERNED VETERANS FOR AMERICA ANNOUNCES SUPPORT FOR REP. FLEMING’S PROPOSED AMENDMENT TO DEFENSE SPENDING BILL,” Concerned Veterans for America, May 12, 2016. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/YaUlv

It seems like a simple concept: defense spending bills should be focused on giving the military the funds it needs to equip our warfighters and keep Americans safe. However, this year’s National Defense Authorization Act, as written, would allow resources to be shifted away from these critical tasks to fund the president’s green energy pet projects. This is a waste of public dollars and only serves to distract the military from its core missions. The well-being of our service members and the defense of our nation are too important to be jeopardized by the president’s political agenda and we hope Congress sides with our troops by supporting Fleming’s proposed amendment,” Caldwell wrote.24Emilye Bell. “CONCERNED VETERANS FOR AMERICA ANNOUNCES SUPPORT FOR REP. FLEMING’S PROPOSED AMENDMENT TO DEFENSE SPENDING BILL,” Concerned Veterans for America, May 12, 2016. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/YaUlv

January 21, 2015

On Twitter, CVA questioned Barack Obama’s declaration that the greatest threat to future generations was climate change:25Priority check: @BarackObama says greatest threat to future generations is climate change. Where’s national security?” Twitter pust by user “@ConcernedVets,” January 21, 2015. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

Funding

According to public 990 forms, Concerned Veterans for America was almost entirely finded by the now-defunct TC4 Trust near its creation. The money flows can be difficult to track, as this funding was send through an intermediary TOHE, LLC (EIN 45-3763542) that is listed as a “disregarded entity” on Vets for Economic Freedom Trust’s 990 forms. 

The summary below is based on data archived at the Conservative Transparency project combined with that from publicly available 990 forms. Note that this is note a complete representation of CVA‘s funding:26Concerned Veterans for America (Vets for Economic Freedom Trust),” Conservative Transparency. Accessed June 9, 2019. Archived data on file at DeSmog.

Donor & Recipient Entity201120122013201420152016Grand Total
Freedom Partners (Donor)  $5,245,000$15,735,000$14,000,000$12,600,000$47,580,000
Vets For Economic Freedom Trust   $12,735,000$14,000,000$12,600,000$39,335,000
TOHE, LLC  $5,245,000$3,000,000  $8,245,000
TC4 Trust (Donor)$1,968,500     $1,968,500
TOHE, LLC$1,968,500     $1,968,500
Center to Protect Patient Rights (Donor) $32,062    $32,062
Vets For Economic Freedom Trust $32,062    $32,062
Einhorn Family Foundation (Donor)     $25,000$25,000
Concerned Veterans for America     $25,000$25,000
Grand Total$1,968,500$32,062$5,245,000$15,735,000$14,000,000$12,625,000$49,605,562

Vets for Economic Freedom 990 Forms

Below are the 990 forms for Vets for Economic Freedom, a 501(c)(4) organization doing business as Concerned Veterans for America:

Concerned Veterans for America/Seminar Network 990 Forms

Below are the 990 forms for Concerned Veterans for America’s 501(c)(3) organization, which became the Seminar Network on January 9, 2019:

Key People

The following is based on information collected from publicly available 990 forms for Vets for Economic Freedom Trust, Concerned Veterans for America’s 501(c)(3), and The Seminar Network:

Concerned Veterans for America 501(c)(3)201220132014201520162017Description
Dan Caldwell    Y Secretary/Treasurer
Jae Pak    Y President
Joe Gecan   YY Vice President/Director
Justin Caporale   YY Secretary/Treasurer/Director
Peter Hegseth   YY President/Director
The Seminar Network, Inc.201220132014201420162017Description
Brian Hooks     YDirector
Brian Menkes     YPresident/Treasurer/Secretary
Charles Koch     YDirector
Chase Koch     YDirector
Dale Gibbens     YDirector
Dan Caldwell     YSecretary/Treasurer
Jae Pak     YPresident
Joe Gecan     YVice President
Mark Lucas     YDirector
Vets for Economic Freedom Trust201220132014201520162017Description
Anthony Ciano     YOperations Director
Cody McGregor    Y National Outreach Director
Dan Caldwell    YYVP (Political Action)
Fred Ford     YGeneral Counsel
Jae Pak  YYYYPresident & COO
Joseph GecanYYYYYYVice President (Strategy)
Josh Fisher     YTrustee
Kathryn Pomeroy YY   Director of Communications
Kimberley Palmese     YPrograms Director
Langhorne C. SiasY     Director of Operations
Mark Lucas     YPresident & Executive Director
Nathan Anderson     YNational Field Director
Peter Gaytan     YCommunications Director
Peter HegsethYYYYYYFormer CEO
Randy Lair   YYYTrustee
Shawn Pattison   Y  National Field Director
Wayne GableYYYYY Trustee (Outgoing)

Members

CVA listed the following people on its website as of June 2019:27Biography,” Concerned Veterans for America. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/f59A8

NameDescription
Dan CaldwellSecretary/Treasurer
Nathan AndersonNational Field Director
Jordon DanielColorado Coalitions Director
Josh StanwitzArizona Coalitions Director
Rick DisneyFlorida Senior Field Director
Steve BurkhalterOhio Field Director
Russ DuerstineTexas Senior Field Director
Adam MillerOhio Senior Field Director
Tim TylerGeorgia Field Director
Diego A. EcheverriFlorida Coalitions Director
Ben RangelField Director
Caroline PhelpsPolicy Analyst and Blog Editor
Gina CampbellLocal Director for Ohio
Fred FerreiraSenior Policy Analyst and Blog Contributor
Warren Davidson 
Shaun RieleyPolicy Analyst and Senior Blog Contributor
Avik Roy 
Michael Kussman 
Jim Marshall 
William Frist 
Eric Berryman 
Frank Brayton Harris 
P.X. Kelley 
Robert Hollinsworth 
Gene Overstreet 
Wade ZirkleFounder and first executive director of Vets for Freedom
Robert J. “Rocky” Spane 
Steve Russell 
Shannon HoughSpecial Projects Manager

CVA Advisory Board

CVA formerly listed an “advisory board” on its website. 

Name20152016Description
Amber SmithYYMilitary Advisor
Darin SelnickYYExecutive Director, Fixing Veterans Health Care Taskforce, and Senior Veterans Affairs Advisor
Jane HortonY Military Families Advisor
Jason BeardsleyYYSpecial Operations Advisor
Jason RedmanYYMilitary Advisor
Karen VaughnYYSenior Military Families Advisor
Scott MannY Military Advisor
Sean ParnellY Senior Advisor

Other People

Actions

October 2018

Concerned Veterans for America Action (CVAA) announced it planned to support former U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla with a six-figure direct mail effort.54Kevin Derby. “Concerned Veterans of America Helps Out Ron DeSantis Against Andrew Gillum,” Sunshine State News, October 2, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/2Uvyn

During his time in Congress, Ron DeSantis demonstrated that he was a steadfast champion for veterans and we are confident he will continue to be their champion in Tallahassee,” said Dan Caldwell, a senior advisor for CVAA. “Floridians and Florida veterans will be well served with DeSantis as governor, and we urge them to vote for him this November.”55Kevin Derby. “Concerned Veterans of America Helps Out Ron DeSantis Against Andrew Gillum,” Sunshine State News, October 2, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/2Uvyn

CVAA also backed McMorris Rodgers, Rep. Ted Budd (R-N.C.), and Ron DeSantis, while opposing Senator Jon Tester (D-Mont.)56(Press Release). “VETERANS GROUP BACKS MCMORRIS RODGERS IN HOUSE RACE,” CVA Action, October 22, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/ocWEe 57(Press Release). “VETERANS GROUP TO NORTH CAROLINIANS: VOTE FOR REP. BUDD,” CVA Action, October 17, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/fyVuk 58(Press Release). “VETERANS GROUP BACKS DESANTIS IN GUBERNATORIAL RACE,” CVA Action, October 2, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/O1pRU 59(Press Release). “CVA ACTION URGES MONTANA VETERANS TO VOTE AGAINST TESTER,” CVA Action, September 26, 2018. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/5HZ20

May 12, 2016

CVA signed on to an open letter alongside the American Energy Alliance supporting an amendment to the National Defense Authorization act which would prevent the distribution of funds “which would direct the Department of Defense to implement a host of policies designed to prevent climate change.” According to the press release at CVA:60Emilye Bell. “CONCERNED VETERANS FOR AMERICA ANNOUNCES SUPPORT FOR REP. FLEMING’S PROPOSED AMENDMENT TO DEFENSE SPENDING BILL,” Concerned Veterans for America, May 12, 2016. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/YaUlv

“The proposed amendment would prevent the department from wasting valuable resources in support of so-called “green energy” initiatives, and would allow the military to focus on its primary mission: keeping Americans safe. In the letter, CVA and AEA write that these mandates would mean “increased costs, further complication of the acquisition process, and additional burdens in logistics, planning, and execution of critical missions.”61Emilye Bell. “CONCERNED VETERANS FOR AMERICA ANNOUNCES SUPPORT FOR REP. FLEMING’S PROPOSED AMENDMENT TO DEFENSE SPENDING BILL,” Concerned Veterans for America, May 12, 2016. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/YaUlv

2016

CVA launched an initial election TV ad, focusing on the seat of retiring Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. The ad featured military veterans speaking in support of Rep. Joe Heck (R-NV), who was challenging Catherine Cortez Masto. The New York Times reported CVA paid $700,000 on the ad.62“Koch-Linked Group Releases Ad Backing G.O.P. Candidate for Harry Reid’s Seat,The New York Times, March 1, 2016. Archived June 9, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/0eg6T

November 6, 2015

CVA released a video ad attacking Hillary Clinton for comments she had made about the Department of Veterans Affairs. CVA reportedly spent approximately $100,000 on the commercial, which targeted internet users in Florida and South Carolina.63Julie Bykowicz. “Clinton targeted in ad from group tied to Koch brothers,” AP, November 6, 2015. Archived February 21, 2016. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/2r4VU

August 2015

NPR reported CVA CEO Peter Hegseth spoke at a “grass-roots” organizing event for a range of groups within the Koch Network such as Americans for Prosperity, the Libre Initiative, and Generation Opportunity. Hegseth spoke in a session titled “Community Organization – Life Past November”:64Peter Overby. “Koch Political Network Expanding ‘Grass-Roots’ Organizing,” NPR, Octoberr 12 2015. Archived June 10, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/RmtJ4

“This isn’t just about an election cycle,” Hegseth, told activists at the conference. “What makes this network different … is that we’ve been in these communities now for three, four years and we’re going to be in them in 2017, 2018, 2019.”65Peter Overby. “Koch Political Network Expanding ‘Grass-Roots’ Organizing,” NPR, Octoberr 12 2015. Archived June 10, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/RmtJ4

2015

Politico reported CVA‘s plans for the 2015–2016 election cycle included “pushing for a more muscular U.S. foreign policy and seeking to give veterans the option of government-subsidized private health care — a priority that aligns with the Koch agenda.”66Well-funded vets groups prepare for 2016 battle,” Politico, June 25, 2015. Archived June 10, 2019. Archive.fo URL:https://archive.fo/Tw6aK

The first set of ads released by CVA in October 2015 aimed to hinder the re-election of Democratic Senators including “Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, the most vulnerable Senate Democrat up for reelection next year, as well as three Democrats up for reelection in 2018: Sens. Joe Donnelly of Indiana, Bob Casey of Pennsylvania and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota”, according to Politico.67Theodoric Meyer. RGA back up in Kentucky,” Politico, October 20, 2015. Archived June 10, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/lXU4J

2014

During the 2014 midterm elections, CVA reportedly spent at least $20 million on electoral and policy work, including an ad campaign targeting the Affordable Care Act.68Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Lisa Rein, and David Weigel. “How a Koch-backed veterans group gained influence in Trump’s Washington,” The Washington Post, April 7, 2018. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/Az5QS

It took the federal government more time to build a website than it took from the time Pearl Harbor was attacked to when Germany surrendered in World War II,” a narrator said in a CVA ad targeting the early implementation of the Affordable Care Act. “Government-run health care doesn’t work.”69Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Lisa Rein, and David Weigel. “How a Koch-backed veterans group gained influence in Trump’s Washington,” The Washington Post, April 7, 2018. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/Az5QS

CVA also rallied around a scandal involving a Phoenix VA hospital which was found to have misrepresented waiting lists for veterans’ medical appointments. CVA was among the first groups to organize rallies calling on Congress to investigate claims that patients may have died while waiting for care. Then-VA Secretary Eric Shinseki stepping down, following a campaign from CVA calling for his resignation.70Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Lisa Rein, and David Weigel. “How a Koch-backed veterans group gained influence in Trump’s Washington,” The Washington Post, April 7, 2018. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/Az5QS

The wait list scandal was a key component of CVA‘s 2014 midterm ads:  “Secret waiting lists. Veterans dying without seeing a doctor. The way government-run health care harmed our veterans at VA shows the threat government-run Obamacare is to all of us,” one television ad claimed, targeting Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), who later lost a reelection bid.71Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Lisa Rein, and David Weigel. “How a Koch-backed veterans group gained influence in Trump’s Washington,” The Washington Post, April 7, 2018. Archived June 7, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/Az5QS

December 2013

CVA released an ad titled ”Government Health Care Equals Disaster” that ran in Florida’s 9th district, represented by Democratic Rep. Alan Grayson. The ad criticized the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), and conflated with the VA healthcare system.72Government Health Care Equals Disaster,” YouTube video uploaded by user “ConcernedVetsNews,” December 9, 2013. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.

Contact & Address

CVA lists the following address on its homepage:76Concerned Veterans for America homepage. Archived June 6, 2019. Archive.fo URLhttps://archive.fo/OB6Mh

Concerned Veterans for America
1310 N. Courthouse Rd., Suite 700
Arlington, VA 22201

Note that this address is shared with a number of other Koch-affiliated groups including The Seminar Network and Americans for Prosperity.

Social Media

Other Resources

Resources

Related Profiles

America Rising America Rising and Affiliated Entities Background on America Rising Hiding Donors and Running Attack Ads: The Various Corporate Entities of America Rising ...
Seminar Network (Stand Together) See DeSmog's profile for Stand Together, the 2019 rebranding of The Seminar Network Background The Seminar Network describes itself as a “growing netw...
Image of Donald Trump by Michael Vadon [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons. Donald Trump Credentials Background Energy ...
Reaching America Background Reaching America is a 501(c)(4) organization founded by Derrick Hollie, an advertising and marketing specialist. The group, founded in 2015, claims to focus on “i...