At the time Senate Democrats joined the Republican request and they began to demand the resignation of Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki ‘s future was sealed. This morning, Shinseki met with the president and he submitted his resignation. Barack Obama accepted. ” Regretfully considerably, I have accepted,” assured the president at a press conference at the White House, after concluding his meeting with Shinseki. Both Obama and the four-star general believed that, to continue in office, his presence would be a distraction that would prevent solve the problems facing the department.
As Obama said, what lies ahead are not just problems in need of management, ” we also have to deal with Congress and with you [press ],” and in this regard Shenseki believes ” could not carry the mission without assuming a distraction. “
After praising ” exemplary service ” that the general has given the country since he took office in 2009, Obama said that Shinseki assumed that the department needed ” new leadership ” to overcome the scandal both to solve what many believe veterans are endemic. More than a week after Obama promised to get to the bottom in the investigation by the delays in waiting lists and poor medical services provided in VA hospitals, the White House this morning decided to step up and accept responsibility what happened, sacrificing Shinseki although without a clear replacement for the long term. For now, will take over Sloan Gibson, current secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Less than six months after legislative elections that may be key to the Democratic ranks, the president has decided not to extend over a scandal that may end up seriously damaging his presidency by touching one of the country’s heartstrings. After nearly 15 years of war – whether in Iraq or Afghanistan, unlike what happened when the soldiers returned from the front in Vietnam, the military today enjoy great respect among the population for services rendered on behalf of the freedom. When a soldier comes home front and traveling in commercial aircraft, the crew asks to be allowed to leave and makes the first applause.
Obama has not waited for the political and media storm abate to accept the resignation of Shinseki. Unlike what happened with the Health Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, and the scandal of the website of health insurance, the president did not wait this time to be able to show positive results to confirm their good management – seven million subscriptions Obamacare, a million more than the White House estimated. “I regret having to resign under these circumstances,” said the president, who has defined Shinseki as “a very good man.”
Scandal Department of Veterans Affairs erupted in Phoenix (Arizona), where at least 40 retired soldiers died last year while on waiting lists for treatment. What happened in Arizona has revealed a pattern of concealment, which now extends to more than 40 medical centers around the country – in which hospital officials ordered the doctors to put these patients on a secret list while not open spaces in the official list that met the objectives of the Department waiting times. Thus, some veterans came to wait almost two years without being acknowledged, but the official list does not show it.
Before meeting with Obama, Shinseki apologized for what happened at an event held in Washington veterans. “I do not defend it because it is indefensible, I can not explain the lack of integrity among some of the directors of our facilities. This is something I have not seen for 38 years in uniform,” Shinseki said in his speech to the National Coalition for Veterans Homeless.
Shinseki ‘s resignation quickly became the main topic of conversation among former soldiers in the corridors of the annual convention of the aforementioned Coalition. ” My heart is broken for his resignation,” said Darell Harbour, who served a year and a half in the Vietnam War and now coordinates a partnership to assist veterans in Texas. Considers that, before the departure of Shinseki should have been dismissed regional officials who oversee hospitals that have been reported negligence. “The system needs to change from top to bottom because it is so large that generates waiting lists and makes people really need not receive priority attention,” he said. In similar terms William Bare, expressed pilot for 27 years in the Air Force, which criticizes the entire burden of care to veterans fall solely on one leg of the Administration, which collapses the system and derives all liability to state divisions. “We must reduce bureaucracy because a lot of paperwork for each procedure is needed,” lamented, while, at the same time insisted that emphasize quality of care truly depends on the management of each hospital and in this case, in California, receive a very good service.
After 38 years in the active Army, Shinseki retired in June 2003. Then held a senior position, chief of staff of the Army, but went out the back door after crashing a few months ago with the Administration of George W. Bush to consider, following their experience in the war in Bosnia in the 90s, it was necessary deployment of troops in Iraq much higher. With an impeccable military career, Obama, who had opposed the invasion of Iraq, he was appointed as Secretary of Veterans in 2009. Shinseki was four-star general and noted especially for his involvement in the Vietnam War, where he lost part of foot by the explosion of a mine.