Eric Shinseki has fumbled his post as Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs since his appointment by President Obama in 2009. Veterans have lost trust and this will not be earned back. The American Legion and other Veterans groups have recently called for his resignation. We’ve called for this before on SOFREP.
“Phoenix VA officials deny there’s a secret wait list; (VA) doctor says they’re lying” -CNN
Some of my observations of Shinseki as head of the VA:
- In 2012, the Inspector General (IG) released a report that laid out massive fraud, waste and abuse under Shinseki’s leadership. Tens of millions in taxpayer dollars was spent on bribes and offsite meetings for his staff.
- Former military members dying while waiting for healthcare. He’s turned the VA into God’s waiting room. Read the full CNN report here.
- 6-10 month wait after amputation for veteran to get a suitable artificial limb.
- Millions of patient consultation records deleted. Ghosting-out veterans in need of further medical treatment and help.
- Over-medicating veterans and not cross-checking prescription drugs.
- Citing his new VA smart phone application as a success for its 60,000 users. This reaches less then one percent of all US veterans, and is hardly a successful initiative. I could go on…
The nation’s largest veteran organization, The American Legion, and one other veterans group, Concerned Veterans for America, on Monday called for the resignation of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki.
The calls for his resignation came after months of CNN exclusive reporting on U.S. veterans who have died while waiting for care at VA hospitals across the country, including in Phoenix.
“It’s not something we do lightly. But we do so today because it is our responsibility as advocate for the men and women who have worn this nation’s uniform,” said Daniel M. Dellinger, national commander of the American Legion, speaking in Indianapolis.
Responding to the legion’s call for the secretary’s resignation, the VA issued a statement late Monday:
“Secretary Shinseki has dedicated his life to his fellow veterans, and nobody is more committed to completing the work that lies ahead,” said a VA statement by Drew Brookie, VA spokesman. “As the secretary says, providing veterans the quality care and benefits they have earned through their service is our only mission at VA.”
The White House also responded with a statement: “The President remains confident in Secretary Shinseki’s ability to lead the department.”
We agree with the American Legion’s call for Shinseki to step down. Mr. Secretary, you’ve been leading from the rear for far too long, and your organization is floundering in the face of one of the largest military-to-civilians transitions our generation has seen. You can’t medicate or delete your way out of this one. You’ve lost the trust of the American veteran.
Step down now.
Read our first post, published October 2012, on why Shinseki should resign immediately.