The mismanagement at the Department of Veterans Affairs has reached a tipping point, and John McCain thinks its head should be held accountable. “I haven’t said this before, but I think it’s time for General Shinseki to move on,” the Arizona Republican and veteran told CNN.
“I think it’s reached that point,” McCain said ahead of a hearing on the department’s practices. “The Phoenix VA is not an island — it’s not immune to other influences; every other VA is probably going to have these same influences on them because they were trying to comply with guidelines that were laid down from the headquarters of the VA that they couldn’t meet.”
McCain’s call for Shinseki to resign comes after an inspector general report found that nearly 2,000 veterans at the VA hospital in Phoenix were placed on fake, or “phantom,” waiting lists. As a result, delays were covered up and hidden while veterans “continue to be at risk of being forgotten or lost.” The Phoenix hospital reported that veterans waited an average of 24 days for primary-care appointments, when in reality they waited more than three months on average.