Key GOP senator demands VA secretary’s resignation

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Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) is demanding that Robert McDonald resign as Veterans Affairs secretary for comparing wait times at VA clinics to lines at Disney theme parks.  

“I call on him to resign because it’s clear he cannot prioritize getting our veterans the health care they deserve and have earned in a timely manner,” Blunt said in a statement Tuesday. “Dismissing wait times when veterans can often wait months for an appointment is negligent and a clear sign that new leadership is needed at the VA.”
{mosads}Blunt, vice chairman of the Senate Republican Conference, is the latest voice in a chorus criticizing McDonald’s remark. 
Speaking to a group of reporters Monday, the secretary said that the department shouldn’t be measuring how long a veteran waits for an appointment, but “veteran’s satisfaction” instead. 
“When you go to Disney, do they measure the number of hours you wait in line?” he asked. “What’s important is what’s your satisfaction with the experience.”
GOP lawmakers and the Republican National Committee quickly pounced, calling McDonald’s comment offensive and demanding that he apologize for it.
The department has been under the congressional spotlight since allegations in 2014 that VA clinics across the country were manipulating data to hide how long veterans had to wait for medical care. 
That scandal led to then-Secretary Eric Shinseki stepping down and Congress passing legislation to overhaul the VA’s healthcare system. 
Blunt added Tuesday that McDonald’s comments were from “Never Never Land.”
Tags Eric Shinseki Roy Blunt

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