Trump dismisses VA secretary in latest shake-up

Trump fires VA Secretary David Shulkin, a Philly native: What you need to know

Who is Dr. Ronny Jackson, Trump's new pick to head the VA?

President Trump announced via twitter on Wednesday that VA Secratary David Shulkin had been fired and will be replaced by White House doctor, Ronny Jackson.

Trump, in a statement, called Jackson "highly trained and qualified" and said that, as a service member himself, Jackson "has seen firsthand the tremendous sacrifice our veterans make and has a deep appreciation for the debt our great country owes them".

President Trump thanked Shulkin in his tweet for "service to our country and to our GREAT VETERANS" and declared that the Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, Robert Wilkie, would be serving as interim VA secretary until Jackson is confirmed by the Senate.

These individuals, who seek to privatize veteran health care as an alternative to government-run VA care, unfortunately fail to engage in realistic plans regarding who will care for the more than 9 million veterans who rely on the department for life-sustaining care. Others include Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price, FBI chief James Comey and FBI No. 2 Andrew McCabe, Trump's chief strategist Steve Bannon, national security advisers H.R. McMaster and Michael Flynn, White House chief of staff Reince Priebus, communications directors Hope Hicks and Anthony Scaramucci, and economic adviser Gary Cohn.

Shulkin, said The American Legion, was "making meaningful, positive changes at the VA". President Obama appointed him as physician to the president, his current role.

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Shulkin was the secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs.

But a major veterans' organization anxious about whether Jackson had the experience to run the huge department. The 10-day trip involved only 3-1/2 working days, cost taxpayers $122,334, and included the use of a VA subordinate as "a personal travel concierge" and improper acceptance of free tickets to the Wimbledon tennis match, the inspector general's report said.

"Privatization leading to the dismantling of the department's extensive health care system is a bad idea". He joined the marines in 2005 and was deployed to Iraq as an emergency medicine provider, before being selected as a White House physician in 2006. In a statement on Wednesday, Trump followed the replacement announcement with nothing but kind words for the former Veteran Affairs Secretary Shulkin. He shaped caregiver expansion plans and led efforts to streamline VA community care options. "The advocates within the administration for privatizing V.A. health services, however, reject this approach".

What Jackson knows about the VA or running a large organization is to be determined. Sen. Shulkin adds that privatization of the VA is at its root a "political issue aimed at rewarding select people and companies with profits, even if it undermines care for veterans". The Koch brothers want that, Sanders said, but every major vet group opposes it.

"That said, I respect President Trump's decision, support the president's agenda and remain willing to work with anyone committed to doing the right thing on behalf of our nation's veterans".

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