Truth Test: Guard Insurance

Friday, October 27th 2006, 10:24 am
By: News On 6

The News on 6 takes a look at some of the ads for Governor Brad Henry, where he claims to have helped out National Guard families.

News on 6 reporter Emory Bryan says it is an ad that has caught the eye of some of our viewers. Governor Brad Henry takes credit for upping the life insurance available to National Guard members. We checked out the claim for Friday’s ‘Truth Test.”

He's through his first term and running for a second. Governor Brad Henry, the Democrat, is running a series of campaign ads but none more prominently than this one. "When Governor Brad Henry learned that families of fallen National Guard soldiers only got $12,000, he did something about it." It was an issue that Henry raised in his state of the state address in February of last year.

Henry wanted the legislature to authorize substantial state funded life insurance policies for members of the National Guard. The state Legislature agreed and Henry signed the legislation on June 2nd, 2005.

The Henry initiative called "Operation Homefront" provides a $250,000 policy for guard members. The premiums are deducted from their paychecks, but the state reimburses them at the end of the year. "Every Oklahoma National Guard soldier now has a $250 thousand dollar life insurance policy."

The ads correctly give the governor credit for increasing the life insurance available to National Guard soldiers, which was part of a larger package of support for the state military. The change took effect last summer and soldiers recently got their first reimbursement checks for the new benefit.

The governor's other ads focus mainly on education - and he's running a lot of them, which means his campaign has support, because he's got the money to buy all that advertising.