May 15, 2014

6 Senate Dem Candidates Who Heaped Praise on Shinseki Before Scandal

This morning, VA Secretary Eric Shinseki testified in front of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee regarding the management of the agency in the aftermath of the 40 veterans in Phoenix who died waiting for care.

No Democrats called for Shinseki’s resignation at the hearing, but they did appear eager to criticize Shinseki in front of TV cameras. That’s quite a change in tone for many of these D’s, who have heaped praise on Shinseki and his leadership in the past.

1. Just last month, Kay Hagan (D-NC) said she was “pleased” with the VA’s progress reducing the backlog of veterans’ claims.

HaganShinseki

2. In 2011, Bruce Braley (D-IA) met with Shinseki and “had a great conversation and a productive meeting,” according to Braley. He added, “I look forward to working with him.”

BraleyShinseki

3. In 2012, Mary Landrieu (D-LA) heaped praise on Shinseki’s management of the VA, stating, “I really appreciate the hard work that you do.”

4. In April 2014, despite the controversy at the VA in Phoenix, Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) said she looked forward “to continue working with Secretary Shinseki” on Veterans Affairs issues.

ShaheenShinseki

5. Two years ago, Mark Udall (D-CO) seemed pleased with Shinseki’s work at the VA and thanked him for his “continued support” of local VA efforts in Colorado.

6. Despite reports of mismanagement issues at the Anchorage VA office, Mark Begich (D-AK) called it “excellent news” that Shinseki visited Alaska.

BegichShinseki