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President Obama: Any Misconduct at VA will be Punished


by MATTHEW DALY and JULIE PACE, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Seeking to head off a growing furor over veterans’ health care, President Barack Obama declared Wednesday that allegations of misconduct at Veterans Affairs hospitals are “dishonorable” and will be not be tolerated by his administration.

“I will not stand for it — not as commander in chief but also not as an American,” Obama said following an Oval Office meeting with embattled VA Secretary Eric Shinseki.

The Obama administration is under mounting pressure from Capitol Hill to address troubling allegations of treatment delays and preventable deaths at VA hospitals. The VA Inspector General’s office said late Tuesday that 26 facilities are being investigated nationwide — up from 10 just last week — including a Phoenix hospital where 40 veterans allegedly died while waiting for treatment and staff there kept a secret list of patients waiting for appointments to hide delays in care.

Obama vowed to hold anyone found to have manipulated records accountable, but continued to stand by Shinseki, despite calls from some congressional lawmakers for the retired Army four-star general to resign.

“We are going to fix whatever is wrong and so long as I have the privilege of serving as commander in chief, I’m going to keep on fighting to deliver the care and the benefits and the opportunities that you and your families deserve, now and for decades to come,” Obama said.

The president spoke hours before the House was scheduled to vote on a bill that would grant the VA secretary more authority to fire or demote senior executives. The White House has said it shares the goals of the House measure — to ensure accountability at the VA — but has concerns about some of the details.

Obama’s statement marked his first public comments on the matter in more than two weeks. Last week, he dispatched his deputy chief of staff Rob Nabors to the VA to oversee a review of department policies and ordered him to report back to the White House next month.

Nabors, who also took part in the Oval Office meeting, was heading to Phoenix later Wednesday to meet with staff at the VA hospital at the center of the allegations, including interim director Steve Young and other hospital administrators.

The current director of the Phoenix VA Health Care System, Sharon Helman, has been placed on leave indefinitely while the VA’s inspector general investigates the claims raised by several former VA employees. Investigators probing the claims say they have so far not linked any patient deaths in Phoenix to delayed care.

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  • Publicdole

    Yes the Commander In Chief should be impeached and serve time.

  • Publicdole

    He know nothing about anything. A complete dope.

  • Nyrebel9

    Obama is all talk and full of bull! He supposely was unaware until he read about it in the newspaper after he played golf…..again! He & biden were fully aware back in 2008. He has to put on his big show on how angry he is just like he was regarding the irs scandal, fast & furious where 200 people died because of the “lost” guns, bengazi, etc. All he cares about is himself; playing golf, spending taxpayer’s money for trips for himself & mochelle, and his execitive orders. Obamacare is another big failure and he could care less. There is a marine stuck in a tinijuana jail who accidently crossed the border and he is ignored. He gave a billion dollars to africa so they can have electricty in one part of the country while food stamp use is at an all time high and food pantries are running out of food as the amount of families using them have tripled. Millions of people are unemployed, yet his priority is taking a selfie at a funeral. He is a narcissist who could care less about the country going down the tubes. Since he took office, he is the biggest promoter of racism. He got a low poll rating and said people don’t like him because he’s black despite him being 48% black, 50% white and 2% saudia arabian. He won’t even acknowledge he is white and it was his white grandmother who raised him because his black father abandoned him. So obama will fire somebody as the fall guy for the whole va fiasco and fly down to miami again to play golf and continue to be a failure and not lead this country as a president.

  • alpinequeen

    Obama knew what to say to impress the voters to get elected but I’m so sick of his continued empty rhetoric.

  • Rags

    Better watch out, he’s really angry now. And you know what that means. He’s gonna draw a line in the sand. I’m as scared as Putin