Boehner Not Ready to Fire Shinseki (Video)
Posted at 12:57 p.m. on May 8
Some House members have called for Shinseki’s resignation. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Speaker John A. Boehner said Thursday he is not ready to join those calling for the firing of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki amid the growing outcry over accusations that dozens died while waiting for treatment at VA hospitals.
“The problems at the VA are systemic,” the Ohio Republican told reporters. “It’s the backlog, it’s the preventable deaths that occurred within that system. There is a systemic management issue throughout the VA that needs to be addressed, and I don’t believe just changing someone at the top is going to actually get to the solutions that many of us are looking for.”
Boehner said he would prefer to pass legislation that would allow Shinseki more leeway in firing managers within the VA system.
Boehner’s comments come as the Veteran’s Affairs Committee voted Thursday to subpoena the secretary.
Calls for Shinseki’s resignation have abounded after the American Legion, the nation’s largest veterans group, on Monday called for him to step down. Since, high-ranking GOP members such as Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn of Texas and Senate Veterans Affairs ranking member Richard M. Burr of North Carolina have said it is time for him to go.
Shinseki told the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday that he will not resign.