Washington D.C. – House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) released the following statement calling for the resignation of Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki:
“It gives me great pride that my district is home to a significant number of heroes that have bravely served our country in uniform, and their care has been a top priority of mine since the beginning of my time in Congress. One of the most basic obligations we have as a nation is to ensure our veterans receive the care and support they need when they return home. Sadly, the failings of the leadership within the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and VA medical centers across the country, failings that most Americans are seeing for the first time over the last few weeks, are not new.
“After receiving countless complaints from my constituents of extended wait times and delayed benefits claims at the VA in Los Angeles, I immediately began looking into the matter in coordination with the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs. In 2011, I requested that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) audit major VA medical centers across the country. What the GAO uncovered regarding what our veterans were facing was totally unacceptable. Last October, Chairman Jeff Miller, Congressman Mike Coffman and I put forth legislation to address these abhorrent failings in the VA.
“General Shinseki, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, has served his country with honor and integrity. No one doubts his dedication to our nation’s veterans. However, the current state of the VA is wholly unacceptable and has become a national embarrassment – it requires immediate action. I believe new leadership at the Department of Veterans Affairs is imperative to fixing the wrong that this massive bureaucracy has done to the men and women we owe so much to. Therefore, today, I call on General Shinseki to do what is right and step aside as Secretary effective immediately.”