Jackson denies he wrecked a car, says nomination 'moving ahead'

Jackson denies he wrecked a car, says nomination 'moving ahead'

Veterans Affairs secretary nominee Ronny Jackson on Wednesday denied new allegations he drunkenly wrecked a car and said his embattled nomination is "moving ahead."

“I never wrecked a car," Jackson told reporters at the White House, adding that he has "no idea where that is coming from."

Democrats on the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee released a report on Wednesday containing new allegations against Jackson, including that he "got drunk and wrecked a government vehicle" at a Secret Service going-away party.


Jackson said the charge would be easy to disprove and insisted "we’re still moving ahead as planned.”

The accusations, however, could further jeopardize Jackson's chances of leading the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The report also says that in his current job as physician to the president, Jackson provided a "large supply" of the prescription opioid painkiller Percocet to a White House military office staff member, wrote himself prescriptions and kept a "private stock" of drugs.

Jackson was already facing heavy scrutiny over allegations of overseeing a hostile work environment at the White House medical office as well as questions about his qualifications to lead the agency, which raised doubts about whether he could be confirmed.

The White House has signaled it plans to fight to save Jackson's nomination, even as the new allegations surfaced.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters that Jackson had undergone four separate background checks, one as recently as last year, and they “revealed no areas of concern.” 
“Dr. Johnson's record as a White House physician has been impeccable,” Sanders said. “In fact, because Dr. Jackson has worked within arm's reach of three presidents, he has received more vetting than most nominees.”
But Sanders declined to comment on specific accusations against Jackson and indicated the White House might look into reports that he was drunk on the job.
“These are new,” she said. “I can only speak to some of the personal accounts that those of us have, as well as the records that we have that are substantiated through a very detailed and thorough background investigation process.”
--Updated at 5:21 p.m.