White House spokesman Jay Carney, pressed by reporters for reaction from President Obama to the burgeoning VA scandal, said his boss is “mad as hell” — but as Memorial Day approaches, the questions about his public silence are getting louder, even as fresh allegations surface about VA workers “gaming” the system at the expense of veterans’ care.
“I’m sure you’ll hear from him at some point on this issue soon”
–White House Press Secretary Jay Carney
The president has said little about the controversy since reports surfaced a month ago about patients dying while waiting for care at a Phoenix VA facility. He dispatched his chief of staff, Denis McDonough, to discuss the issue on a Sunday show this past weekend — the most in-depth comments so far came from embattled VA Secretary Eric Shinseki during his congressional testimony last week.
Carney said Tuesday that White House Deputy Chief of Staff Rob Nabors, who is assisting in an internal review, is visiting the Phoenix center as part of that process. Asked if the president would comment soon, Carney said he had no update on Obama’s schedule.
A day earlier, Carney was pressed on why Obama has not addressed the public. Carney suggested an address of some kind is being planned but did not elaborate. Read the rest of this entry »