David Shulkin

Shulkin Says He Did Not Resign

Former Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin told NBC News that “he was fired and did not resign from his post, despite conflicting claims from the White House.”

A White House spokesperson told Politico that Shulkin “resigned,” despite the former Cabinet member’s public statements saying otherwise.

“The terms of Shulkin’s departure could have an impact on President Trump’s ability to pick a replacement.”

‘It Should Not Be This Hard to Serve Your Country’

David Shulkin wrote an op-ed in the New York Times following his ouster as Veterans Affairs secretary, railing against the “toxic” and “chaotic” environment in Washington and describing a “brutal power struggle” at the VA.

Said Shulkin: “As I prepare to leave government, I am struck by a recurring thought: It should not be this hard to serve your country.”

Spokesman Says Trump Still Has Confidence in Shulkin

“A White House spokesman says the president still has confidence in embattled Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin,” Bloomberg reports.

 “Three administration officials told The Associated Press Sunday that Trump is planning to oust the embattled secretary amid an extraordinary rebellion at the agency and damaging government investigations into his alleged spending abuses.”

Perry Denies Interest In Veteran’s Affairs Job

Energy Secretary Rick Perry said “he had no interest in becoming the next head of the Department of Veterans Affairs, flatly rejecting speculation that he would soon take over the position amid rapidly eroding White House support for embattled VA Secretary David Shulkin,” the AP reports.

Two administration officials said that Shulkin’s position “is growing more precarious and that he could be out of a job within the week, but cautioned that nothing was finalized.”

Trump May Replace Shulkin with Perry

“President Trump, fresh off replacing his secretary of state and C.I.A. director, is considering firing his secretary of veterans affairs and installing Energy Secretary Rick Perry in the post,” the New York Times reports.

“Mr. Trump did not make a formal offer to Mr. Perry when the two men met on Monday. But the people said the president has grown impatient with the department’s current secretary, David Shulkin, and may want to replace him with someone already in his cabinet.”

CNN: “Trump and his senior aides are frustrated with Shulkin because they believe he has undermined the White House on several occasions and is unwilling to work with other members of his agency who were appointed by the Trump administration.”

VA Chief Misled Ethics Officials About European Trip

Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin’s chief of staff “doctored an email and made false statements to create a pretext for taxpayers to cover expenses for the secretary’s wife on a 10-day trip to Europe last summer,” the Washington Post reports.

“Vivieca Wright Simpson, VA’s third-most senior official, altered language in an email from an aide coordinating the trip to make it appear that Shulkin was receiving an award from the Danish government — then used the award to justify paying for his wife’s travel, Inspector General Michael Missal said in a report released Wednesday.”

“The account of how the government paid travel expenses for the secretary’s wife is one finding in an unsparing investigation that concluded that Shulkin and his staff misled agency ethics officials and the public about key details of the trip.”