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Gov. Walz stops in Rochester to discuss veterans’ concerns in campaign event for Joe Biden

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- On Saturday, Gov. Tim Walz toured Southern Minnesota and made a stop in Rochester.

The governor hit the campaign trail in support of Joe Biden for president.

Walz first went to Preston and then spoke with veterans in the Med City.

"Veterans issues, are issues that resonate throughout the entire society. And if we see veterans not being cared for, it makes everyone lose faith," Walz said.

The private event was a roundtable style discussion. Two veterans along with Rochester Representative, Tina Liebling, and Senate candidate Aleta Borrud talked with the governor on what is needed to best assist veterans amidst the pandemic.

One of the biggest topics was centered around suicide prevention for veterans.

"There are really pressing issues that are affecting the health and well-being of veterans today, that are not being addressed. And it's mainly from the federal level that this is happening. One of the issues is the suicides among veterans. It's 6,000 a year. It's a terrible toll that's happening. But it's also the care at the VA Medical Center," said Tom Dimond, an army veteran

Dimond said funding for VA centers is also a huge issue.

"For example, the VA Medical Center in Minneapolis, its serves most of the state. It's not having the staff and positions filled. There are hundreds of positions that are not being filled today, which affect the care of the veterans," he said.

Dimond said Joe Biden understands the importance of veteran concerns and trusts Biden to make reasonable decisions concerning the military.

"While taking care of veterans today who have served. It is also very important that we have somebody in office who believes in diplomacy. Who believes in allies. Who works with them so that we do not send our service members into harm's way unless it's absolutely necessary," he said.

KaMaria Braye

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