A House Republican has filed a resolution calling for the termination of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki, who many blame for failing to ensure veterans have adequate healthcare.
The resolution is a reaction to the latest administration scandal, which involves efforts by VA officials to manipulate records to make it look like veterans did not have to wait longer than two weeks for a health appointment. In reality, many waited months, and the department has admitted that these delays contributed to the death of about 40 veterans.
The resolution from Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-Texas) finds Shinseki to be the wrong man for the job and effectively calls on President Barack Obama to fire him.
“Congress urges the President, in light of these aforementioned failures, to immediately request the resignation of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki,” it reads.
The brief resolution finds that Shinseki’s “poor oversight and failed leadership has led to the tragic and avoidable deaths of some of the nation’s veterans.” It adds that Shinseki showed “ineffectiveness and a lack of transparency” as the top official at VA.
“Secretary Shinseki has displayed an unwillingness or inability to change the culture of falsifying documents at the Department of Veterans Affairs,” the resolution concludes.
The Obama administration is under intense pressure to quickly take steps to remove those involved in the scandal. This week, even Democrats said people need to be fire for not handling the problem competently, and a few Republicans suggested the administration should start at the top.
Republicans in particular pressed Shinseki on whether anyone has been fired because of the scandal, but Shinseki said he wasn’t sure.
Despite this pressure, Attorney General Eric Holder said this week that he has no plans to investigate Shinseki’s actions.