Trump signs law to help veterans exposed to mustard gas

Sen. Claire McCaskill testifies before a Senate committee with a photo of Missouri Veteran Arla Harrell, who was exposed to mustard gas in World War II, in the background. (Office of Sen. Claire McCaskill)
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (AP) - World War II veterans exposed to mustard gas by the military will find it easier to receive help under legislation that President Donald Trump signed into law.

Trump on Wednesday signed the legislation that Sen. Claire McCaskill, D - Missouri, pushed through Congress. It requires the Veterans Affairs Department to reconsider disability benefits denied to those who claimed the testing caused health problems.

McCaskill says the military tested the effects of mustard gas and the blister agent lewisite on about 60,000 veterans by the end of World War II. Her office estimates a couple hundred participants could still be alive, including 90-year-old Missouri resident Arla Harrell, for whom the bill was named.

McCaskill says, "Every once in a while, Congress gets it right."

Sen. Roy Blunt, R - Missouri, co-sponsored the bill.

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Information from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, http://www.stltoday.com

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