On Thursday, Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin threatened to fire VA employees to ensure new accountability, since the agency has been mired in scandal for years over firing only a handful of people involved in the healthcare scandal, which led to delayed medical care to veterans across the U.S.
The Washington Examiner reports that fewer than a dozen people were fired over the last two years, while many were allowed to retire with full benefits.
Shulkin told Fox News’ Pete Hegseth: “I came at a time of crisis, when the VA was in crisis, and I came to help fix the system.” He added, “I have been in the private sector my whole life, running big hospital systems, and I came to help fix things.”
Shulkin, who was part of the Obama administration and is a physician by trade, had been with the VA for nearly 18 months before Trump appointed him to head the department.
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During the Fox News interview, Shulkin didn’t address the healthcare crisis directly, though he did say he is committed to delivering on promises and is working with Congress on legislation to bring more accountability to the agency.
Shulkin said, “People who don’t show up to work, who do cocaine and are watching porn at work, are going to be fired, because I’m not going to tolerate it, and they’re going to be out of our system.”
“I made clear to the Congress—and going through the confirmation process—that if they expect the VA to be fixed, they have to give the secretary the authority to be able to fix it and hold the secretary accountable,” he said. “And that’s what I really expect … so I’m working now closely with the Congress, both the House and the Senate, to be able to make sure that we have an accountability bill that allows us to make sure that if people shouldn’t be working in the VA, they won’t be working in the VA.”
H/T: Washington Examiner
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