President Obama said Wednesday he “will not stand” for misconduct and mismanagement at the Department of Veterans Affairs, but defended his
Critics have been calling for Shinseki's resignation in the wake of complaints that VA medical facilities have concealed long waits for healthcare. Obama said he would wait to see the results of internal investigations before holding officials at accountable.
“I will not stand for it, not as commander in chief, but also not as an American. None of us should,” Obama told reporters at the
The investigation has expanded to 26 VA sites, the agency's inspector general's office confirmed Wednesday. The office, which previously identified VA facilities in Phoenix, San Antonio and Fort Collins, Colo., as the subject of its review, declined to identify the new sites.
White House Deputy Chief of Staff Rob Nabors will be flying to the VA facility in Phoenix, which has been accused of maintaining secret waiting lists to hide delays in treating veterans.
Later Wednesday, the House is to vote on legislation that would give the VA secretary new authority to fire senior employees. The proposed VA Management Accountability Act has Republican and Democratic co-sponsors and the support of veterans groups.
Richard J. Griffin, the VA’s acting inspector general, told a
Griffin told lawmakers last week that his investigators were examining whether the Phoenix facility's waiting list "purposefully omitted the names of veterans waiting for care, and if so, at whose direction" and whether any veterans' deaths were related to delays in care.