GOP lawmaker calls for Shulkin to resign

GOP lawmaker calls for Shulkin to resign
© Getty

Republican Rep. Mike Coffman (Colo.) is calling for Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary David ShulkinDavid Jonathon ShulkinBiden's nominee for VA secretary isn't a veteran — does it matter? The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Mastercard - Congress slogs toward COVID-19 relief, omnibus deal A crisis that unites veterans MORE to resign from his post after a VA inspector general's report found he misused government resources for a trip he took last summer to Europe.

"It's exactly corruption and abuses like this that doesn't help our veterans. @SecShulkin must RESIGN now," Coffman tweeted.

The call for Shulkin to step down comes after the release of a watchdog report that says the VA secretary's chief of staff doctored an email to get approval for taxpayer funding for Shulkin's wife's flights, which cost more than $4,000.

ADVERTISEMENT

The report also says Shulkin misused government resources by accepting Wimbledon tickets and airfare for his wife as gifts when he took a trip to Europe last summer.

Shulkin said the tickets were from a close personal friend. The inspector general, however, found that he had only met the woman who provided the tickets — Victoria Gosling, an adviser for the Invictus Games — three times at official events.

The report recommended that Shulkin reimburse the VA for his wife's airfare and reimburse Gosling for the cost of the Wimbledon tickets and "any other tangible benefits." It also recommends that the VA "audit the expense vouchers, travel authorizations, and the time and attendance records for all travelers and take any appropriate action to correct any errors."

In a letter to Inspector General Michael Missal, Shulkin wrote that the report "draws conclusions based on subjective and arbitrary criteria."

Shulkin, who was appointed as a VA undersecretary by former President Obama, is the latest Trump Cabinet official to face scrutiny over his travel expenses. Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinMenendez, Rubio ask Yellen to probe meatpacker JBS The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Goldman Sachs - Biden rallies Senate Dems behind mammoth spending plan Mnuchin dodges CNBC questions on whether Trump lying over election MORE, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott PruittEdward (Scott) Scott PruittEPA bans use of pesticide linked to developmental problems in children Science matters: Thankfully, EPA leadership once again agrees Want to evaluate Donald Trump's judgment? Listen to Donald Trump MORE and Interior Secretary Ryan ZinkeRyan Keith ZinkeWant to evaluate Donald Trump's judgment? Listen to Donald Trump The Hill's Morning Report - Biden launches blitz for jobs plan with 'thank you, Georgia' OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Court sets in motion EPA ban on pesticide linked to developmental issues | Trump Interior Secretary Zinke files to run for Congress, again | Senate passes bipartisan B water infrastructure bill MORE have all been criticized for expensive taxpayer-funded travel. 

Former Health and Human Services Secretary Tom PriceThomas (Tom) Edmunds PriceWant to evaluate Donald Trump's judgment? Listen to Donald Trump Former Georgia ethics official to challenge McBath A proposal to tackle congressional inside trading: Invest in the US MORE resigned last year amid an uproar over his repeated use of private jets for official business.