By Ryan Gierach, West Hollywood, California
President Barack Obama Friday announced accepting the resignation of the administration Veterans Affairs secretary over a growing scandal involving wait times for care at VA hospitals.
Appearing before reporters shortly after his 45 minute meeting with Gen. Shinseki at the White House, he said the General feels that, “the VA needs new leadership” to address the widespread problems laid out in news reports, adding that Shinseki “does not want to be a distraction” to fixing the situation.
The president named Sloan Gibson, a top Shinseki aide, to temporarily assume the VA leadership until a new secretary gets appointed.
In the aftermath of the announcement, West Hollywood Congress member Adam Schiff issued the following statement:
Today, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank) released the following statement:
“The President has accepted the resignation of VA Secretary Eric Shinseki, and top leaders of the Phoenix office have been let go — the overhaul of the VA has now begun in earnest. The Administration must act quickly to investigate and address chronic deficiencies and intolerable wait periods at VA hospitals around the country. And Congress must help prepare for the surge in demand for Veteran’s healthcare as the wounded from the nation’s most recent wars continue to grapple with severe injuries and trauma.
“Veterans in my district should know that if they experience any problem with the VA that we can assist with, please reach out to me. My office routinely assists veterans from our community in their efforts to get the treatment, medicine and care from the VA that they have earned, and we are ready to help you in any way.”