McConnell foe calls on Shinseki to resign

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Kentucky Democratic Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes is calling for Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric ShinsekiEric ShinsekiVeterans group blasts VA secretary, despite words of regret Cruz: VA secretary 'should resign' VA secretary refuses to apologize for Disney comments MORE to resign, putting her out ahead of Sen. Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellPeter Thiel does not make the GOP pro-gay Reid: Trump is a 'hateful con man' McAuliffe: Clinton won't move TPP without changes MORE (R-Ky.), who hasn't explicitly called for him to step down. 

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"We owe a solemn obligation to our veterans and our government defaulted on that contract. I don't see how that breach of trust with our veterans can be repaired if the current leadership stays in place,” she said in a statement, after confirming she wants to see him step down.

Grimes, battling the Senate minority leader in one of this cycle’s top Senate fights, is the first major Democratic Senate candidate to call for the embattled VA chief's resignation, and her request is a break with the majority of congressional Democrats. 

While McConnell has decried a “stunning period of dysfunction” at the VA, he hasn’t outright called for Shinseki’s resignation.

"A change in leadership might be a good step in the right direction,” he said earlier this month.

Democrats have largely stood by Shinseki while also calling for a major re-examination of how the VA is handling its affairs, following allegations of mismanagement at the VA that include charges of secret wait lists at VA hospitals and delayed care for veterans.

On Tuesday, Georgia Reps. John Barrow and David Scott became the first two congressional Democrats to call for the secretary’s resignation.

—This post was updated at 1:14 p.m. 

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