Retired Gen. Stanley McChrystal has taken himself out of the running to head the beleaguered Veterans Affairs Department, according to a report.
“That’s a job that I think is going to be very difficult. And it’s going to take some specific expertise. I don’t think I have that expertise, and so I don’t think I’m the best person for it,” McChrystal told Yahoo News.
He said he hopes the administration finds someone “with just the right combination [of skills] and they let that individual have enough freedom of action so he can do the right thing.”
The retired general's name had been one of several floated as a possible replacement for former Secretary Eric Shinseki, who resigned last Friday. He stepped down after a pair of reports uncovered fraudulent practices throughout the agency’s medical network, including schemes to paper over how long veterans had to wait to receive care.
“When I head about this, I said, ‘You know, we’re not doing our part,’ ” said McChrystal, who was relieved of his command in Afghanistan after making disparaging comments about the Obama administration. “We have a responsibility to those who serve.”
The White House has reportedly approached Delos “Toby” Cosgrove, the chief executive officer of the Cleveland Clinic and a Vietnam War veteran, to lead the troubled agency.