Shhh. President Obama doesn’t want you to know this, but the VA is still broken.
The president recently asserted at a CNN town hall that he “fired a whole bunch of people” who oversaw corrupt VA facilities.
The Washington Post fact checker gave this claim Four Pinocchios. That is actually more Pinocchios than senior VA officials fired for manipulating waitlists at agency health care facilities. As the Post notes, a grand total of one executive was fired for waitlist violations. One.
Then there’s VA Secretary Bob McDonald’s claim that 90 percent of VA medical center heads have been replaced since the start of his tenure in 2014. That sounds like a great talking point, but a new report from USA TODAY shows this number is just—well—
“[O]f 140 medical center directors, 92 are new since McDonald took office in July 2014. That’s 65%. Of those, only 69 are permanent placements; the rest are interim appointees. And all but eight of these directors already worked at the VA.”
These attempts to whitewash the corruption at the VA throughout the course of this administration are shameful. You can’t fix a problem if you insist it no longer exists. Here the facts speak for themselves:
- The VA itself admits that more than a half million veterans are still waiting over 30 days to see a doctor.
- A new independent watchdog report found that 215 veterans died waiting for care at the Phoenix VA hospital in 2015 alone.
- An average of 20 veterans commit suicide every day, and yet nearly one-third of calls to the VA suicide hotline still go unanswered.
This agency continues to be a national embarrassment under President Obama’s failed leadership. That’s why, as part of our Better Way agenda, House Republicans have a plan to completely overhaul the VA so it works for every single veteran and their families. As our report explains,“The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, is directly proportional to their perception of how the veterans of earlier wars were treated by their nation. We will honor those who served by modernizing the institutions that serve them.”
Learn more about our plan at better.gop.