Ousted VA Secretary David Shulkin slammed Donald Trump without mentioning his name in a scathing op-ed saying that “it should not be this hard to serve your country” and that the real motivation for his firing was because he opposed privatizing Veterans Affairs.
I have fought to stand up for this great department and all that it embodies. In recent months, though, the environment in Washington has turned so toxic, chaotic, disrespectful and subversive that it became impossible for me to accomplish the important work that our veterans need and deserve. I can assure you that I will continue to speak out against those who seek to harm the V.A. by putting their personal agendas in front of the well-being of our veterans.
As many of you know, I am a physician, not a politician. I came to government with an understanding that Washington can be ugly, but I assumed that I could avoid all of the ugliness by staying true to my values. I have been falsely accused of things by people who wanted me out of the way. But despite these politically-based attacks on me and my family’s character, I am proud of my record and know that I acted with the utmost integrity. Unfortunately, none of that mattered.
As I prepare to leave government, I am struck by a recurring thought: It should not be this hard to serve your country. Source: New York Times
Shulkin used poor judgment when he ran into ethics problems related to the $100,000 vacation he took with his wife at the expense of taxpayers, but that wasn’t what did him in with Trump. Several cabinet secretaries, like Ben Carson, Ryan Zinke and Scott Pruitt have already come under fire for lavish spending. They haven’t been fired. What did Shulkin in was the fact the opposed privatizing the VA. Trump not only wants to privatize the VA but also the Federal Aviation Administration. To do this, he needs to install some puppets.
Trump nominated presidential physician Ronny Jackson as the next VA Secretary even though he has zero experience managing a government office. He allowed himself to be used as a puppet for Trump to help his rich friends. Trump wanted his personal pilot to lead the FAA into the ground. Like Jackson, he has zero experience in these matters.
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— Tammy Duckworth (@SenDuckworth) March 29, 2018