CUMMING, Ga. -- After veterans all over the country planned a "Million Veteran March" on Washington for Sunday morning, those who couldn't make it to the capital staged their own rallies. They said they felt veterans were being used as pawns in a political game.
First they heard reports of war memorials getting barricaded off when the shutdown started. Then came the delay in death benefits going to the families of soldiers killed in action. The final straw is the possibility that if the shutdown continues, VA benefits could be affected.
"Benefits should never be cut off," veteran supporter Kathy Yoakum said. "And these memorials were built for veterans and paid for with their blood sweat and tears. They should never be closed."
At the national rally Sarah Palin and shutdown architect Senator Ted Cruz of Texas spoke. But those at the Cumming rally said it wasn't about the politics.
"This includes both Republicans and Democrats and their inability to be sensible," former defense department worker Bill Kessler said.
After the shutdown is over, they plan to support legislation that would keep the memorials open during future shutdowns.