Lawmakers ask Defense Department to settle with soldiers who say oil field sickened them

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PORTLAND, Oregon — Members of Oregon's Congressional delegation have asked the Defense Department to reach a settlement with 12 Oregon National Guard soldiers who said they were sickened by a toxic chemical during the Iraq War.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in May overturned an $85 million jury award to the soldiers.

The military contractor Kellogg, Brown and Root successfully argued that Oregon was not the proper jurisdiction for the case. KBR now seeks $850,000 in legal fees.

In a letter sent Tuesday to Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, the Oregon lawmakers said they are outraged that KBR is going after the veterans. They ask the Defense Department take control of the litigation, and bring it to a fair conclusion.

Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley signed the letter along with Reps. Earl Blumenauer, Suzanne Bonamici, Peter DeFazio, and Kurt Schrader.

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