The White House defended President Trump’s decision to choose his physician, Ronny Jackson, to be the new head of the Department of Veteran Affairs saying that the “status quo was not working.”
Trump just announced Jackson’s nomination a day ago. White House spokeswoman Lindsay Walters said that Trump has full confidence in Jackson. Walters added that Trump did consider several other individuals for the post but his faith in Jackson’s credentials prevailed in the end. Walters specified Jackson’s healthcare experience and his distinguished career in the medical profession as things that would be “beneficial at the VA.”
The President fired Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin on Wednesday over controversies of his excessive spending of taxpayer money on personal excursions during professional travel as well as for his staff’s alleged efforts to cover up such questionable expenses.
Trump prominently gave importance to the VA during his presidential campaign in 2016 and promised a lot of reforms in the office for the benefit of our veterans.
He quickly followed such vow in June last year, only six months into the White House, when he signed the Veterans Affairs reform legislation meant to protect whistleblowers while making it much easier to fire failing employees at the department. The bill was prompted by the 2014 scandal at the Phoenix medical center where patients horrifically died while waiting for their health care.
The President said then: “Veterans have fulfilled their duty to the nation and now, we must fulfill our duty to them.”
Trump once referred to the VA during the campaign trail as the “most corrupt” and “most incompetently run agency in the United States.”
Jackson has to be confirmed by the Senate.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Key senators who will decide whether to confirm Dr. Ronny Jackson to head Veterans Affairs say they don’t know enough about him to form an opinion about his ability to lead a vast bureaucracy<a href="https://t.co/T5h8LWGXDi">https://t.co/T5h8LWGXDi</a></p>— The Wall Street Journal (@WSJ) <a href="https://twitter.com/WSJ/status/979531174644273153?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">March 30, 2018</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
The VA under dismissed Shulkin suffered a spate of embarrassing headlines, including stories connected to the severe mismanagement of a VA hospital in Washington, D.C.
Walters reiterated: “At the end of the day, as I said earlier, the status quo was not working. We need somebody who understands the health care system.”