Next year's freshmen class in the house of Representatives will include nine veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.
The number of recent war veterans gives veterans' groups some confidence that they will have powerful advocates on Capitol Hill.
While there's growing numbers of recent war veterans in congress, the overall numbers of congressional veterans are declining. In the late 1970's, Congress had more than 400 veterans. Next year there will only be about 100 veterans serving in Congress.
Veterans organizations are hoping the addition of Afghanistan and Iraq war veterans on Capitol Hill will help provide and edge in dealing with veteran issues like unemployment and disability benefits.