VA Secretary Gen. Eric Shinseki resigns - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki resigns

Veterans Affairs Secretary Gen. Eric Shinseki speaks Friday in Washington, DC, at a meeting on homeless veterans. (Source: CNN) Veterans Affairs Secretary Gen. Eric Shinseki speaks Friday in Washington, DC, at a meeting on homeless veterans. (Source: CNN)
  • National politicsMore>>

  • GOP panel divided on red ink for tax cuts

    GOP panel divided on red ink for tax cuts

    Tuesday, September 19 2017 10:52 AM EDT2017-09-19 14:52:23 GMT
    Tuesday, September 19 2017 1:16 PM EDT2017-09-19 17:16:20 GMT
    A Republican on the Senate Budget Committee says that tax cut advocates on the panel are pressing for cuts that could add $1.5 trillion or more to the deficit over the coming decade.More >>
    A Republican on the Senate Budget Committee says that tax cut advocates on the panel are pressing for cuts that could add $1.5 trillion or more to the deficit over the coming decade.More >>
  • Huntsman says Moscow's meddling led to low level of trust

    Huntsman says Moscow's meddling led to low level of trust

    Tuesday, September 19 2017 11:23 AM EDT2017-09-19 15:23:45 GMT
    Tuesday, September 19 2017 1:16 PM EDT2017-09-19 17:16:18 GMT
    Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, President Donald Trump's nominee to be U.S. ambassador to Russia, says Moscow's meddling in the 2016 presidential election led directly to the low level of trust between the two...More >>
    Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, President Donald Trump's nominee to be U.S. ambassador to Russia, says Moscow's meddling in the 2016 presidential election led directly to the low level of trust between the two former Cold War foes.More >>
  • Trump lawyer: Senate panel delays private interview

    Trump lawyer: Senate panel delays private interview

    Tuesday, September 19 2017 10:12 AM EDT2017-09-19 14:12:23 GMT
    Tuesday, September 19 2017 1:16 PM EDT2017-09-19 17:16:15 GMT
    Donald Trump's personal lawyer says a proposal to develop a Trump Tower in Moscow was "solely a real estate deal and nothing more.".More >>
    Donald Trump's personal lawyer says a proposal to develop a Trump Tower in Moscow was "solely a real estate deal and nothing more.".More >>

(RNN) -  President Barack Obama announced the resignation of Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary General Eric Shinseki following several tumultuous weeks and pressure from both Democratic and Republican lawmakers.

Operations at the Department of Veterans Affairs came into question after reports of long wait times at healthcare facilities became an issue, especially in Phoenix where dozens of people allegedly died as a result.

An inspector general's report detailed improper scheduling procedures throughout the VA hospital system.

"Our veterans deserve the best, they've earned it," Obama said Friday while speaking inside the White House.

Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson, who was confirmed to that position this past February, will become acting head of the department.

The president had previously voiced support for the embattled VA head, but said the resignation was Shinseki's idea and based on his own "good judgement."

Before accepting his resignation, Obama said Shinseki had begun the process of firing key people at the Phoenix VA.

"The VA is a very big organization that has had problems for a very long time, sometimes management problems sometimes funding problems," Obama said. "What we try to do is systematically identify the problem and go after it."

House Speaker John Boehner reacted by saying the change in leadership was merely superficial, not a move toward finding a solution.

"Until the president outlines a vision and an effective plan for addressing the broad dysfunction at the VA, today's announcement really changes nothing," Boehner said.

Shinseki made public comments Friday morning prior to the president's announcement, saying his office was working to contact each of the 1,700 veterans in Phoenix waiting for treatment. The goal is to accelerate care for them and others on waiting lists nationwide.

"We now know the VA has a systemic, totally unacceptable lack of integrity within some of our veterans' health facilities," Shinseki said. "That breach of trust involves the tracking of patient wait times for appointments. Our initial findings of our ongoing internal review of other large VA healthcare facilities also shows that to be true. That breach of integrity is irresponsible, indefensible and unacceptable."

He also said he was "too trusting of some" working in the system and called upon Congress to support a proposed bill that would give the VA secretary greater power to remove senior officials.

Shinseki is a retired Army four-star general and has served as the Secretary of Veterans Affairs since January 2009. He served as Chief of Staff of the Army from 1999 until 2003, a tenure that included overseeing operations in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. He retired from active duty in August 2003.

He is a 1965 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point. Commissioned as a second lieutenant upon graduation, he was wounded twice while serving two tours of duty during the Vietnam War.

Shinseki also holds a master's degree from Duke University and is a graduate of the National War College.

The VA healthcare system was established in 1930 and currently has more than 1,700 facilities in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Philippines, Guam and American Samoa. That includes 152 hospitals, but the bulk of those facilities are the VA's 800 outpatient clinics.

Copyright 2014 Raycom News Network. All rights reserved.

  • NEWSMore>>

  • Hwy. 57 bridge may have to be replaced before it reopens

    Hwy. 57 bridge may have to be replaced before it reopens

    Tuesday, September 19 2017 12:53 PM EDT2017-09-19 16:53:33 GMT
    There appears to be a hole straight through the pavement on the roadway. (Photo source: WLOX)There appears to be a hole straight through the pavement on the roadway. (Photo source: WLOX)

    Officials with the Mississippi Department of Transportation said the damage is still being assessed, and it's possible the bridge will have to be replaced before it can reopen. 

    More >>

    Officials with the Mississippi Department of Transportation said the damage is still being assessed, and it's possible the bridge will have to be replaced before it can reopen. 

    More >>
  • Man in critical condition after overnight shooting in Moss Point

    Man in critical condition after overnight shooting in Moss Point

    Tuesday, September 19 2017 11:59 AM EDT2017-09-19 15:59:25 GMT
    (Photo source: File)(Photo source: File)

    A 28-year-old man is in critical condition after an overnight shooting in Moss Point. Police Chief Calvin Hutchins said the victim was shot inside his home on Tela Dr.

    More >>

    A 28-year-old man is in critical condition after an overnight shooting in Moss Point. Police Chief Calvin Hutchins said the victim was shot inside his home on Tela Dr.

    More >>
  • All clear at St. Martin Middle School after bomb threat

    All clear at St. Martin Middle School after bomb threat

    Tuesday, September 19 2017 10:17 AM EDT2017-09-19 14:17:44 GMT
    All clear after bomb threat at St. Martin Middle SchoolAll clear after bomb threat at St. Martin Middle School
    Authorities evacuated St. Martin Middle School Tuesday morning after a bomb threat. Jackson County Sheriff Mike Ezell said a threatening note was found at the school. Ezell said deputies checked the school and found nothing.  “We feel right now it is a prank. We went through the school and believe everything is OK,” Ezell told WLOX News Now. Jackson County Schools Superintendent Dr. Barry Amacker said the situation was resolved quickly. “The school took the n...More >>
    Authorities evacuated St. Martin Middle School Tuesday morning after a bomb threat. Jackson County Sheriff Mike Ezell said a threatening note was found at the school. Ezell said deputies checked the school and found nothing.  “We feel right now it is a prank. We went through the school and believe everything is OK,” Ezell told WLOX News Now. Jackson County Schools Superintendent Dr. Barry Amacker said the situation was resolved quickly. “The school took the n...More >>
Powered by Frankly